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Review: Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates

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Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates is another attempt at a raunchy, immature, comedy romp, featuring outlandish situations, lad banter and excessive use of the word ‘bro’. To its credit it does try to strive for some gender equality in a male dominated genre but its biggest flaw is simply that it just isn’t funny enough.

The film follows the Strangle brothers, Mike (Adam Devine) and Dave (Zac Efron), who have a history of ruining family events by partying too hard. Their parent’s demand they find ‘nice’ girls to take as dates at their sister’s wedding in Hawaii ultimately to keep them in check. When Tatiana (Aubrey Plaza) and Alice (Anna Kendrick) reply to their Craigslist ad they think they have hit the jackpot, but they soon find out the girls are just as obnoxious as they are and have other motives for being there. However it all culminates in the obvious feel good and predictable ending.

The best parts of this film without doubt, revolve around Aubrey Plaza and Anna Kendrick who have a nice dynamic. Aubrey continues her excellent sarcastic demeanour from Parks and Rec to comic effect. The way in which they both try to disguise themselves as those ‘nice girls’ only for the mask to slowly slip, works really well.

It’s a shame that the same can’t be said for the men. Adam Devine is mostly an irritant. He has clearly been taking notes from Jim Carrey and Will Ferrell in his often over the top approach, but he is neither as good nor as funny to pull it off. Zac Efron performs better but is still at pains to keep his nice boy image. The problem with them both is that their relationship never seems real. This might be down to the more ad-lib nature of some of the exchanges but their dialogue often seems stilted.

This is director Jake Szymanski’s first feature length film coming from making videos for Funny, or Die. It’s could have been an interesting dynamic a web based director and a film whose premise is a ‘true story’ of two brothers who used craigslist to find dates. Instead the film is pretty much anonymous, but to be honest you wouldn’t expect much else from such a comedy.

All that can be academic if the film delivers what it promises, laughs. Well it definitely has some funny moments; particular highlights are the outlandish ones including a reference to Jurassic Park and a massage scene which brought a laugh. However these set-pieces seem few and far between, most of the jokes are quick, simple and obvious, with no layering.

Overall it’s a watchable comedy that is good for a few laughs. Aubrey Plaza and Anna Kendrick saving it from mediocrity. The problem is the comedy is few and far between and are nothing we haven’t seen before.

2.5-out-of-5

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