Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Baywatch (2017): Review

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Those of you who have following me for a while would probably be surprised that I have actually been excited and waiting for the Baywatch movie to come out so that I could go see it. I usually prefer action movies and shy away from most of the recent rated R comedies because I don't like movies that rely on inappropriate and awkward situations for laughs instead of making them actually funny or clever. For some reason when I saw the trailers for Baywatch, I just wanted to see it. It probably had to do with the fact that I did watch the television show Baywatch (1989-2001) and Baywatch Nights (1995-1997) back in the 90s; that I have been seeing the photos of Zac Efron looking mighty fine and fit and can I just say "abs"; and that I tend to like the stupid comedies that The Rock has been in.  Anyway, I have been looking forward to seeing this movie and therefore watched it over the holiday weekend. I am glad to say that it was not as bad as I thought it would be, and except for a few moments, I enjoyed the whole thing. Is this a good movie? No. It is a lot of OTT fun? Yes.

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Baywatch is a movie based on the 1989-2001 television show about lifeguards, known for David Hasselhoff, slow motion running shots with bounding boobs, and over the top acting. The movie version casts Dwayne Johnson as Lieutenant Mitch Bucannon, who is the a head lifeguard out of Tower 1 and who takes on three new lifeguard recruits; Matt Brody, a bad boy two time Olympic gold medalist who was brought on for publicity, played by Zack Efron; Summer Quinn, the attractive counterpart for Brody who has skills and dedication, played by Alexandra Daddario; and Ronnie the not so hot or cool kid who had dedication and really just wants to become a lifeguard, played by Jon Bass. There is also CJ Parker, played by Kelly Rohrback, the hot lifeguard that Ronnie lusts over; and Stephanie Holden, played by Ilfenesh Hadera, who is there to assist Mitch and is the most capable of the group but is really only used when needed for the plot.  While training these new cadets Mitch gets involved in investigating Victoria Leeds, played by Priyanka Chopra, who he believes is involved in some local deaths and drugs influx in his bay. Also staring: Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Sargent Ellerby, and Rob Huebel as Captain Thorpe.

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This movie has a very high production value and I could easily see the money that was spent to make it really shinny. It draws that attention and it is obviously that a lot of time was spent on making it the way that they wanted it to be. I don't know if it was supposed to be released in 3D but it looked like there were some moments and shots that were meant for 3D but my theatre was only showing it in 2D. It was obvious enough that I noticed.

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The plot was really simple and pretty stupid but that was what I was expecting. The movie even references some of the OTT and so-not-lifeguard responsibility plots that the television show had, so it was easy to tell that although the movie was stupid it knew that it was being ridiculous. Although it was a simple and obvious plot there were not many things that I really didn't like. I could have done without the dead guys penis sequence but other than that it wasn't too much just involving laughing due to it being uncomfortable (others in the audience laughing, not me as I didn't think it was funny or necessary). Actually now that I am thinking about it the only moments that were that way (uncomfortable laughter) was related to penises.

I really enjoyed Dwayne Johnson in this movie and his over the top acting works with the tone of this movie and his interactions with others. Tone wise the movie was consistent and although the characters did not have a lot of dimension or real development the characters fit together. You could tell that none of the actors thought they were making a masterpiece so you could see in their acting that they knew the whole movie was just taking the piss.

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Overall, this was enjoyable and I would see it again. I liked how the characters interplayed together. There were some moments where Zack Efron was distracting and I didn't think that the character of Stephanie Holden really was needed or fit in well (she seemed to only be there because of the same named character on the television show) but overall it was exactly what I expected the movie to be, but with me actually laughing more than I thought I would.

This is defiantly a R rated comedy for sexual inappropriate so would not recommend bring younger kinds into the movie.

My Rating: 1+
My Enjoyment Rating: 3

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