Review: Year One (2009)

Directed by: Harold Ramis | 97 minutes | comedy, adventure | Actors: Jack Black, Michael Cera, Oliver Platt, David Cross, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Vinnie Jones, Hank Azaria, Juno Temple, Olivia Wilde, June Diane Raphael, Xander Berkeley, Gia Carides, Horatio Sanz, David Pasquesi, Matthew Willig, Harold Ramis, Rhoda Griffi

To get straight to the point: “Year One” is a shit movie. Well, there is nothing wrong with poo in itself. Pooping is nice. Healthy even. Some people swear by it. Others combine it with an equally pleasant activity, but undoubtedly more about that elsewhere. However, you have poo in different scents and colors. You have stately princess poo that smells like flowers, hard man droppings that plump pleasantly, thick dark poops with seeds from yesterday’s meal, but you also have smelly squirt poo (commonly called diarrhea). Grouchy thief that smells like disease. In the latter category, “Year One” falls approximately.

Like the plot, the characters have little to do. A few animal skins at most, but that’s right because we are somewhere in prehistoric times. Or in ancient times, that is nowhere really clear. Under the guise of “God created the world in just seven days”, a few well-known biblical stories also appear to play out in distorted succession. Cain hits Abel on his harsh and less than a day later Abraham is about to sacrifice his son Isaac. Great hilarity arises when Dad later decides that he should celebrate the intervention at the sacrifice by cutting off everyone’s front part of the penis. Shortly afterwards, when Isaac docks on Sodom, he is immediately the talk of the town. Nobody talks about anything more than Isaac’s schwanz missing a piece. Super!

No, that is not entirely true. It’s also about poo and pee. Very important. Apparently our ancestors had only a few basic (and anal) topics of conversation and they are fully exploited. But with jokes from the year zero. While it is really already year one, so they don’t work well. The nomination is therefore not really appropriate. Jack Black is mainly devouring his nose, Michael Cera apparently has to rely on his hypothermic humor, but that goes flat on his face. Not that anyone cares about that – the entire cast is practically sleepwalking to the end of the movie. An ending that is also underlined with the least funny outtakes ever.

This film gets a (brown) star for every year. That makes a nice total of one. Harold Ramis first has to sit on the child seat again and only when he has learned to turn a decent bolus in large elegant capital letters can he venture back into the director’s chair. Until then, the eyes are closed and nostrils closed. Because this doesn’t seem like anything at all. (For people who are desperately wondering after reading these words where the usual paragraph with a clear, concise plot description went – your reviewer wiped his ass with that! Enjoy your meal!)

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