The Interview is a film that needs no introduction, really, because it’s led the news headlines on many occasions recently, but just in case you’ve been hiding under a rock throughout December, it centres around entertainment hack Dave Skylark (James Franco) and his producer Aaron Rapaport (Seth Rogen), who are in charge of the No.1 gossip show, Skylark Tonight, being invited to interview North Korean despot and owner of a shit haircut, Kim Jong-un (Randall Park). However, the government actually want them to kill him while they’re in town.
There’s a rather lame opening with a schoolgirl singing about death to America, in front of a large crowd all waiting for a rocket to take off behind her, as part of a nuclear weapon test to make sure it could go the distance to wipe America off the map. However, then it leads into a spoof interview with Eminem where he’s castigated for apparently wanting to kill an elderly woman in her 80s, yet in real life he was also rabbiting on about trying to have his wicked way with pop star Iggy Azalea and not wanting her to “blow that rape whistle“, so truth is stranger than fiction, yet there’s another twist in the interview I’ll leave you to discover which leads to a humourous outcome.
While I think the perfect length for most films is 105 minutes, I believe a comedy film’s length should be around 90 minutes, so I don’t know why some directors and producers (Seth Rogen co-working in both roles in this case) think a comedy should run to nearly two hours, like this one, or even beyond that like the appalling A Million Ways To Die In The West. However, there’s a lot of rude and gross-out comedy in The Interview which Seth Rogen and James Franco can manage, whereas Seth McFarlane just doesn’t cut the mustard when he’s taking the lead.
The Interview has made more of an impact off-screen than it has on-screen, generally down to the fact that it’s never been ON-screen before now due to the apparent kicking off from Kim Jong-un.
Since the film depicts two American men going to bump him off, Sony have asserted that North Korea hacked into their emails and also leaked the film online, although it’s clear that it was never leaked online because it could never be found… or so a man told me down the pub.
Along the way, a number of high-profile cinema chains refused to show it in the US because of threats of violence, from the hacker morons, if they did, leading to Sony pulling the film.
Even Barack Obama waded into the debate saying that Sony should release it. You’d think that the leader of the free world – and the man who gave a lot of hope with his administration, only to show he’s as crap as the rest of the Presidents by saying he’d shut Guantanamo Bay within a year, and then completely failed to do so – would have better things to do, but then, he’ll soon be out on his ear so he doesn’t give a toss.
History may be kind and overlook his faults, and simply state the fact that he’s America’s second black President, since we all know that the first was David Palmer in 24.
In the end, Sony gave the go ahead for its release on the intended date (Christmas Day in the US), but by then only around 300 independent cinemas were showing it, and Sony also released it online – a version that, while in 1080p HD, is only in Dolby ProLogic rather than the usual Dolby Digital 5.1 or DTS 5.1.
Click on the poster for the full-size image, and go to page 2 for more thoughts on the film.
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.