Dave Skylark and producer Aaron Rapoport run the celebrity tabloid show “Skylark Tonight.” When they land an interview with a surprise fan, North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, they are recruited by the CIA to turn their trip to Pyongyang into an assassination mission.
Running Time: 1hr 52min
MPAA Rating: R
by Cara Nash
A very funny farce that deserves some big screen love.
Following the well-publicised controversy it kicked up, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg’s The Interview is pretty much what fans of the pair thought it would be pre-war of words and Sony cyber-attack: a funny farce that throws in a few political barbs and a lot of bromance. Adhering to their usual dynamic of Franco playing the funnyman to Rogen’s straight man, the former stars as Dave Skylark, the airheaded host of a celebrity gossip program, produced by his best bud Aaron (Rogen). When the pair discovers that Kim Jong-un (Randall Park) is a fan of the show, they land an interview with the North Korean president in the hopes of validating themselves as journalists. Their plan for legitimacy, however, is thrown for a loop when the CIA confronts the duo with a plan to assassinate the dictator.
While the film falls apart a little toward the end in the loose, shambling manner of a typical Rogen and Goldberg production, for the most part, The Interview is a hoot. The jokes fly thick and fast, and somewhat appropriate considering the makers of the film, The Interview positions Kim Jong-un as another sympathetic dude (one who’s embarrassed to admit he likes drinking margaritas and Katy Perry’s “Firework”), who bonds with the simple-minded Dave in some of the film’s funniest and weirdly, sweetest, sequences.
While Rogen and Goldberg’s stance is clearly anti-North Korean government, the duo don’t exactly wave the American flag high either, with the film throwing some hits the way of its own country. There’s also some thoughtful commentary about the fact that merely assassinating Kim Jong-un and replacing him will do little to solve the country’s problem. So while the mission of The Interview is to make you laugh (and it succeeds), it’s nice that it offers up something beyond mere missile-in-butt-jokes… but they’re uh, in there as well.