Billy McMahon (Vince Vaughn) and Nick Campbell (Owen Wilson) are two watch salesmen once known for their innate ability to sell anything to anyone, even “prosciutto to a Rabbi.” However, their bubble of success is popped when the duo is fired by their boss (John Goodman). Their situation goes from bad to worse when Billy finds out his home has been foreclosed on, causing his much younger girlfriend to leave him. The two men realize they are at odds with a booming world of technology that no longer sees them as relevant.
Without jobs or hope, the men part ways to find trade in smaller forms. Until Billy decides he and his buddy should reach for the stars by applying for a job at Google. Despite their lack of technical prowess, the lure of an office equipped with slides, free food, and all the primary colors the human eye can stomach, causes them to take the opportunity to work as interns in hopes that it will lead to a dream pie in the sky career. And hooray for us viewers who get to watch the stale hijinks transpire in the meantime.
The fact that Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson, two stars whom enjoyed the fruits of success in the days of yesteryear, but recently haven’t been able to enjoy the same triumph, star in a film as characters attempting to make a comeback from failure in a time of new opportunities and talent is like… what’s the word I’m looking for? You know, when it’s like rain on your wedding day? Or a free ride, though you’ve already paid? And yes, The Internship makes unfortunate use of a song that didn’t truly know the definition of the word “irony” either.
Tweedle Dee and Tweedle… it’s too easy.
There are two things that I enjoyed most about The Internship. One was being able to see what it’s like to work for one of the world’s biggest corporations. For years I’ve envied the lucky few that get to call the child-like atmosphere of Google their job. The Internship shows that working at Google seems like what I’ve long expected it to be like, and that’s working in the play area of McDonald’s minus the badass ball pit. The second best thing is the film’s closing credits, an impressive accumulation of credits manifested through all the patented Google constituents like Hangout, Google Plus, Translate, and Images.
You know what my least favorite thing about a comedy is? When it’s not funny. I can count on one hand the number of times The Internship mustered a mere chuckle from me; four. The script definitely delivers its share of trite, bland jokes and irrelevant nods to 80s films, along with some moments of ridiculous improvised banter. Yet, nearly every joke falls flatter than the lamest Family Guy skit. In fact, anyone who laughs throughout The Internship is someone I honestly don’t want to know. Our time together would be undoubtedly monotonous and unenjoyable.
The Internship is one the most stereotypically mundane films I’ve seen in a long time. It’s delivery is so generic that in this day and age you should be tarred and feathered for attempting to make a profit off of stock plot devices and generic motifs like this. I knew The Internship’s conflicts, solutions, and ending 20 minutes into watching it. And I was ten minutes late! You know every main character in the film’s beginning through obvious, repeated close ups on the same few people. It’s obvious when you’re supposed to feel empowered due to the power chords being played during an uplifting speech, while despondent guitar strings are introduced when you’re supposed to feel another character’s pain. Instead of forcing emotion down our throat, director and writer Shawn Levy, along with his co-writer Vince Vaughn, should have just focused more on the individual characters and story, enough to incite a genuine reaction.
Let’s just keep drinking to forget how ridiculous this whole story is. Cheers!
Which leads to my biggest issue with The Internship; the implausibility of the script. Is it an impossible premise? Definitely not. Is it highly improbable? God yes! How two bumbling doofuses with no job, a foreclosed home, a credit score in the negatives, and in their 40s with little work experience find themselves at an esteemed corporation worth billions of dollars after bombing the interview process, which they did from a computer in a public library while openly bribing children to leave them alone, on top of bombing their first week of training, yet still get to stay and take advantage of the fruits of being an intern makes my head hurt. Plus how are they paying bills?
Aside from the paper thin plot, we are forced to watch a group of kids who are less developed than their perceptibly terrible social lives. In a typical nerdy misfit fashion, the group consists of a virgin, an overly dominated mama’s boy, a rebel without a hint of a clue or reason, and the typical socially awkward geek. No one discusses why they want to work at Google or what it is about technology that tickles their fancy more than the real world. Instead, to them it’s just a job that they want because they’re geeks who are good with algorithms and programming.
The element of the film that completely halts any lick of momentum it could possibly have is the unnecessary, and frankly boring, romance aspect between Nick and a hardworking, desperate for a family co-worker, Dana (Rose Bryne), who tells him from them start that she has no desire to date him. But hey, we know how that goes in most films. Ladies, let’s be real, who wouldn’t risk years of hard work that got you to the top of your company for some old guy you’ve only known for about two months? Just Dana and I? Well, with my dad complex that seems about right.
The Internship is just pabulum. The concept could have lended itself to an entertaining romp about two men making it back on their feet, but the film’s lack of comedy, sense, or any bit of individuality spares any type of enjoyment. There’s an interesting discussion on the lack of opportunities for twentysomethings despite what parents of older generations think that I as a twentysomething found interesting, however, it’s not fleshed out enough for anyone to take the argument seriously. Instead, The Internship proves itself to be nothing more than waste of valuable footage and space, much like the present careers of Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson.
Take a Drink: every time Flashdance is referenced.
Take a Drink: every time a character asks “what?” to another.
Take a Drink: every time a character rambles on aimlessly for more than a 20 seconds.
Take a Drink: every time someone drinks a Miller Lite vortex bottle.