Sex Tape: Some things Cannot be Unseen
Unfortunately, some things cannot be unseen. If that were an option, I would erase Sex Tape from my mind. The Jason Segal, Cameron Diaz flick is a massive disappointment. Rather than intelligent humor, the writing falls on cheap jokes and completely unrealistic scenarios. With all the film’s downfalls, Segal and Diaz’s chemistry is not one of them. Surprisingly, the duo seems to fit quite well together, if only they had some better lines to work with. Whoever made the trailer deserves some massive props, making such an unfunny film seem hilarious.
Let’s set the scene. Annie (Cameron Diaz) is a blogger who writes about motherhood. The film begins in the middle of Annie writing a blog asking how one “gets it back” after many years of marriage. At what point does the flirtatious sexuality of a marriage die and become, let’s schedule sex in for Thursday? One night when Annie and Jay’s (Jason Segal) kids are with their grandparents, Annie surprises Jay by wearing a really sexy outfit prepared for a night of extracurriculars. However, everything they try becomes far too awkward; they have lost that young flame of passion. So, what’s a desperate couple to do? When all else fails, get drunk and film yourselves having sex…
“It went up to the cloud!”
“And you can’t get it down from the cloud!?”
“Nobody understands the cloud; it’s a mystery!”
This exchange is the funniest discourse in the film, and honestly, quite true. Jay constantly gets new iPads for work, so he gives away his old ones to friends, family and colleagues. The cloud is how the sex tape is accidentally shared with all these people. Jay and Annie, not completely understanding the technology, run all over town in pursuit of obtaining these gifted iPads. What they do not know is that a feature called “remote wipe” allows a user to erase content off all connected devices. With that one simple piece of information, this movie could have been avoided…
First and foremost, the writing is sub-par. While the dialogue is acceptable, probably with a lot of help from the experienced actors in the film, the scenarios are far too ridiculous. Up until Annie and Jay visit Hank’s (Rob Lowe) house, I was almost okay with what had been happening. However, when Annie starts doing cocaine with Hank and Jay races maniacally through the house avoiding death by dog, I was done. The clever writing ends and falls to cheap slapstick humor and random cameos that do not add much to the story.
“Who has sex for three hours? That’s the length of the movie Lincoln. You did the full Lincoln!”
This line is so clever and witty; I wish this could have been an example of the intelligent humor in the film. Unfortunately, it was inserted into the trailer as one of the only exceptionally funny lines in the movie. This is a sad example of a movie where all the best parts are in the trailer. In fact, save yourself fifteen bucks and just watch the trailer. You’ll laugh for about the same amount of time you would in the actual movie.
So why two stars? With all of Sex Tape’s flaws, it is not the worst film I have ever seen. The story is one just about every married couple can relate to. It is so easy to fall into a routine, get so used to your significant other that you take them for granted. The relationship Jay and Annie have is a perfect example of how kids can get in the way of romance. This is not to say the kids are to blame for the extinguished spark, but how a balance of work, children and romance is no easy feat. I think the story promotes this theme quite well throughout the film.
Another plus is the acting. It is a shame that Cameron Diaz and Jason Segal had to work with this script. (It is also a shame Jason Segal was a part of the writing team.) In another film, I am sure they would work even more beautifully together. Their performances are what made the film bearable. In particular, both Cameron Diaz and Ellie Kemper, who plays Annie’s friend Tess, rarely if at all seem like the nagging wife. That small fact made the film seem modern and refreshing. Every once in a while Diaz has to be the voice of reason, but it is not written in the typical, traditional sexist way. As far as promoting comedic women, this film should receive a gold star.
I truly wish Sex Tape had been as funny as the trailer made it out to be. Jason Segal and Cameron Diaz have a unique comedic chemistry I hope to see revisited in a future film. Due to the lack of clever humor, cheap slapstick jokes and overall cheesiness, I cannot recommend wasting the time or money seeing this in the theater. This is unequivocally an On-Demand type film. Really, if you simply watch the trailer you should be satisfied. Thank goodness it didn’t take the full Lincoln to tell this story.
Release Date: July 18, 2014
Run Time 1:34
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Sex Tape IMDB
- Sex Tape (2014) - IMDb
Directed by Jake Kasdan. With Jason Segel, Cameron Diaz, Rob Corddry, Ellie Kemper. A married couple wake up to discover that the sex tape they made the evening before has gone missing, leading to a frantic search for its whereabouts.