Peter (Robert Downey Jr.) is on his way home from a business trip to witness the birth of his son, scheduled for the end of the week. Unfortunately, at the airport he meets the obnoxious Ethan (Zach Galifianakis), who immediately gets him into all kinds of troubles and finally booted off the plane and on the No-Fly-List. Unfortunately, Peter’s luggage, including his wallet and ID stay on plane. And so he finds himself on a cross-country-trip with Ethan (who at least had the decency to get kicked off the plane as well).
I should have known. After The Hangover I just should have known better than to go ahead and watch this movie, let alone pay good money for it. But then along comes Robert Downey Jr. and has to be in the film. And I let myself be swayed. Boy, do I ever regret it.
In the world of Todd Phillips, people [and by people I mean men, because women barely exist in it anyway] suck. They are so childish, immature and aggressive that it seems completely weird when somebody shows up [in this case, Jamie Foxx’s Darryl] who behaves like a decent person, at least some of the time [the whole thing with the bumps in the car was not so decent]. In that universe a normal friendship is an outlandish idea [Darryl being friends with Sarah immediately leads to Peter distrusting both of them].
In that universe, the guy we’re supposed to root for has an abusive personality. He screams, kicks, hits, shouts uncontrolled – but then he apologises for it, admitting that he “has issues”, so we’re supposed to forgive him. And then he starts screaming again.
In that universe, being annoying strips you not only of all other qualities as a human being, it basically strips you of your right to be treated as a human being.
And I refuse. I refuse to live in such a misanthropic world. I refuse to watch movies that treat people that way. I refuse to have my first reaction to casual violence be laughter. I refuse to be amused by any of this.
After seeing this film, I feel like a completely humorless person. Around me people were laughing their asses off, while I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. It is not funny when an adult punches a little kid [and seriously, that’s the guy we’re supposed to root for to see the birth of his child? He can’t stand to be five minutes in a room with two kids without suckerpunching one – I do not think he’s fit to be a father]. It is not funny when a guy accidentally spills his father’s ashes and starts to cry about it. [It is slightly funny though when said ashes are used as coffee, I have to admit.]
But I’d rather be a humorless bitch than find those things hilarious.