Tonight I went and saw Pain & Gain and I was extremely surprised to fine that I actually liked it. I was not really sure what to expect going into this movie. I knew it was the new Mark Wahlberg comedy, I tend to shy away from these, and that it was another movie being released in quick succession that has Dwayne "the Rock" Johnson starting in it. Because nothing really came out this week that I was dying to see and that it had been a while since I saw a comedy, I decided to go see this movie and I am really glad we did.
This movie was completely OTT from start to finish and the movie really goes for it in the dark comedy kind of way. In this instance it really worked and the caricatured but somewhat developed characters worked. The development of the characters was done, although each was very much what they were, but it was good that there were not too many characters focused on and that they introduced them at different times, so there the audience was able to understand who everyone was, what role they played, and how they fit into the story. Basically the movie made sense as a story although it was completely ridiculous.
This movie is actually a true story and is based on the Miami Gym Gang consisting of Daniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg), Adrian Doorbal (Anthony Macki), and Paul Doyle (Dwayne Johnson). Although the story is about the capture, torture, and murder of actual people, the movie takes a dark comic approach which works in movie form. Yes, it is horrible that these events actually occurred but I am going to just focus on the movie and how due to being actual events the story has flow and dept to it. I still find it hard to believe that what the movie portrayed actually happened and that these stupid decisions were actually made but there are court records and evidence to support this.
The film follows these three bodybuilders turned criminal who kidnap and steal the money of Victor Kershaw (named changed from true story), played by Tony Shalhub. Lots of ridiculous things happened as they get themselves deeper and deeper into their messy situation.
This movie commits to the dark comedy and the OTT acting of all the characters really works. I think that it was well cast and the chemistry between them was spot on. There was a focus on the sexual and it definitely earned it R rating, but the focus was both on the male and female. While their were strippers/women in little to no clothing gyrating and making porn faces, there was also men buffed and oiled up, as well as Mark Wahlberg stripping down to his Marky Marks.
Like I said, I was surprised to find that I liked this movie but I must stress that it is for people who can handle the dark comedies which are presented in high gloss forms. This is one of the better ones I have seen and thinking back on the movie, I enjoyed the OTT ride and, yes, at times it went to places that were a bit too but there were no where near the way to far I have seen and disliked in other movies. Basically I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was not the complete and utter crap I was expecting and that might be why I found myself enjoying the movie.
Also of note, this movie was set in the mid 1990's so there is lots of 90s flair, outfits, attitude, fashion, and technology.
My Rating: 2+