"Hot Rod" is a very familiar story, as it's both a reworking of "Dirty Work" and is very similar to many of the recent loser does good films. However, it's told in a rather pedestrian manner and lacks the fun of other similar films, such as "Talladega Nights" and "Waterboy".
The story is a goofy tale about a total loser who manages to somehow achieve a tiny level of success by the end of the film. Andy Samberg is Rod Kimble...a guy who has no job, lives in his parents house and has an obsession with doing stunts....nearly all of which he completely misses achieving. He decides to up his game and do some PAYING stunts in order to afford to give his verbally and physically abusive step- dad a new heart.
There are several problems with the film. The first is that it just isn't written all that well. Despite being a lot like "Dirty Work" and the films I mentioned above, it replicates a VERY familiar pattern but in a completely unimpressive and not particularly funny way. I think the reason I was so unimpressed as well is because I thoroughly LOVED Samberg's "Pop Star" and know that he's capable of much more given a well written script. Overall, it's a time-passer and nothing more...mostly due to there being little in the characters to like as well as a dearth of humor.
Rod Kimble is a naïf, a slacker living in a small US town with his mom, his younger brother, and his stepfather whose respect he craves. He also misses his dead dad, whom he thinks was Evel Knievel's back-up. Rod, a man-child, believes that he is a stunt man. When his stepfather needs an operation, with help from his brother and his slacker pals, Rod hatches a plan to set a school-bus-jumping record on his moped. First, his crew and he have to raise money to rent the buses and build the ramp. Trouble is, Rod's inept at his chosen career. Looming failure is complicated by the return of Denise, Rod's next-door neighbor and secret heartthrob, who is home from college. Is public humiliation at hand?
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July 04, 2016 at 10:04 PM