The Interview is a 2014 comedy about two American journalists being tasked with assassinating Kim Jong-un. It would have been a typical stoner flick but North Korea heard about it, got all butt hurt, and hacked Sony in retaliation. They prevented the film from getting a wide release in theaters, but they failed spectacularly because of all the free publicity they generated for the film. It was quite a successful marketing ploy; it guaranteed that this movie will forever be remembered for all the hoopla it caused.
The film was written by Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, and Dan Sterling. It was directed by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. It stars Seth Rogen and James Franco. Seth Rogen is pretty talented in case you haven’t figured it out yet. Rogen plays Aaron Rapoport, the producer of an entertainment news show called Skylark Tonight. Franco plays Dave Skylark, the pompous host of Skylark Tonight. Randall Park plays Kim Jong-un, the crazy dictator of North Korea and a huge fan of Skylark Tonight. He’s such a fan that he wants to be on the show and arranges for Aaron and Dave to come out to North Korea to interview him. The CIA hears about the interview and they enlist Aaron and Dave to assassinate him.
It’s a political comedy filled with bathroom humor. One second you’re laughing at propaganda, the next second you’re laughing at fart jokes. It’s reminiscent of Team America: World Police but the humor is a little more down to earth. Team America’s cruel dictator was an obvious stereotype. He was shorter than all the other puppets, he had a ridiculous accent, and was clearly the embodiment of evil. The Interview’s dictator was more realistic. Randall Park plays him as shy and insecure. He want’s Dave Skylark’s approval because he looks up to him. He has daddy issues and all he wants is to be respected. That’s why it’s a bit more startling when his crazy side comes out.
It’s not a great movie. This Is the End and Pineapple Express are both better than The Interview, but The Interview feels more like a complete film. Rogen is starting to mature and a writer, director, and actor and his films are starting to tackle more social and political issues. They still retain humor and heart, but he’s becoming more worldly and it shows. The film was just released on Netflix; I suggest that you watch it. It won’t change your life, but it will make you laugh and that’s what every comedy should do.
Critically Rated at 13/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young