Bil’s rating (out of 5): BB.5. USA, 2008. Columbia Pictures, Relativity Media, Apatow Productions. Story by Judd Apatow, Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, Screenplay by Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg. Cinematography by Tim Orr. Produced by Judd Apatow, Shauna Robertson. Music by Graeme Revell. Production Design by Chris L. Spellman. Costume Design by John Dunn. Film Editing by Craig Alpert. Golden Globe Awards 2008.
Process server Seth Rogen makes a routine visit to his pot dealer (James Franco) and is sold a highly rare form of marijuana known as Pineapple Express. Later that evening he witness a cop (Rosie Perez) and a shady druglord (Gary Cole) murdering a man and takes off from the scene of the crime, unfortunately leaving behind his recently smoked joint as evidence. Given the rarity of Pineapple Express (Franco was the only dealer in town who was selling it), it is no time before the bad guys realize that Rogen was their loose end, prompting him and Franco to hit the road and try to solve the murder before they themselves become the targets of the assassins. Yet another bumbling comedy from the Apatow fun factory, this one has Rogen once again pinning the group’s fresh, non-linear style of comedy on a well-worn and familiar plotting format. The fact that the characters decide to make a run for it in the woods but, in a drug-induced haze, decide instead to revel in the glories of the afternoon sun before passing out is the sort of thing that makes the movie hilarious; the fact that the story has a by-the-numbers development and resolution and is, therefore, too boring for words makes it a chore to sit through. I say this even while taking into account the fact that Franco’s letter-perfect character creation gives the great Jeff Spicoli a run for his money. Rogen needs to understand that he is a one-note comedian who charmingly peppers films like The 40 Year Old Virgin with his presence, but when made the centre of attention is a tiresome windbag with an annoying laugh.