Take a Drink: every time you laugh. If you use only this rule, you’ll be an excellent Designated Driver.
Do a Shot: every time you don’t laugh. Our lawyers are better than yours.
Do a Shot: every time someone screams.
Toast your Drink: to Robin Williams. Though throttled by the script, his energy still shone through.
By: Hawk Ripjaw (Five Beers) –
Egypt, the 1930s. A team of explorers borrowed from twelfth unit footage from Raiders of the Lost Ark are looking for a tomb for something. Among the team is that butthead with the black hat and glasses. One explorer’s son falls into a tomb, where he finds the ancient tablet that is definitely not cursed. Despite the local Egyptians telling them that “the end will come,” the explorers take the tablet anyway. Because fuck the locals. When do they ever know how the local curses work?
Flash forward to the present day. Larry Daly (Ben Stiller) is still doing exactly the same thing he’s been doing in the last two movies: being a night guard and hanging out with the exhibits that come to life at night. Larry is still depressed he wasn’t able to bang Amelia Earhart or at least bury his face in that crotch, but since Amy Adams has better things to do than star in a movie series about museum exhibits coming to life, the world will never know how that ended up. Actually, if we’re being literal, Earhart dropped Larry off at his own museum shortly before sunrise, so chances are good that she burned up and turned to dust roughly 30 minutes after doing her new would-be fuck buddy a solid.
So now, Larry is still super single because “I play fetch with a T-Rex and hang out with Robin Williams” are both things that are obvious lies for obvious reasons. Also, his son is a turbo-asshole who wants to DJ for some obscure Spanish country. Still, Larry has a kickass job. There’s trouble in paradise however, as the tablet that makes the exhibits come to life has started to become corrupt and it’s making the exhibits slowly start to die/return back to their former wax selves.
At the museum, they are told by a pharaoh with a suspicious preoccupation with oral sex that the tablet must be exposed to moonlight to be restored to its former power. Larry demands rewrite of the script and reimbursement for his plane ticket to Britain, because fuck Frontier Airlines. Fifty bucks to carry on a fucking bag? What the hell are they smoking?
Anyway, we’re like halfway through the movie and fresh out of plot, so the last 45 minutes of film is nothing but hijinks. They continue for the next 45 minutes.
The trailer for Pan showed before the movie. I’m so excited for that shit.
There is exactly one legitimately funny scene in the entire film, and it was one that I had known about beforehand. When speaking to Larry, the Pharaoh (Ben Kingsley) demands “You are speaking to a Pharaoh. Kiss my staff!” Larry half-asses the staff kissing, but seconds later, when the Pharaoh refuses to discuss the intricacies of the tablet, Larry says “Please? I’ll kiss your staff.” Maybe I was just desperate for some semblance of actual comedy or perhaps I just love any form of slang involving a cock going into someone else’s mouth, but I laughed. There’s also a joke about Jewish slavery in that same scene, which was funny for the former reason.
Even though the movie recycles the “jumping into a painting” gag, this time they really nailed it as Larry and Teddy pursue the villain into MC Escher’s iconic Relativity. As they fight over the tablet, they fall in and around the stairs and railings. It’s fairly well-constructed and looks cool, which is even more baffling considering that the rest of the movie features such banal direction and lackluster visual splendor.
You know what was funny? Intermittent bits of Thomas Lennon’s script for the original Night at the Museum. Know what wasn’t funny? When this movie tried to rip that off. When unable to produce any actual humor of its own, the movie falls back on cheap and easy humor recycled from other places. At least half a dozen gags from the original film are just reused here, and Rebel Wilson essentially plays a more family-friendly version of her character from Pitch Perfect, which is to say, she acts like a fucking moron and talks about her weight. When all else fails, it just reverts back to suggesting that Octavius is gay.
Right as the trailers started, a large group of very young children were brought into the theater by a single mom. Those children did not laugh a single damn time in the entire movie. I’m not even exaggerating here. The old couple in front of me laughed once at something that I cannot recall. The children up front were dead fucking silent for almost two hours. The most excitement I ever heard from any of them were after the trailer for Seventh Son: “MOM, WE HAVE TO SEE THAT ONE!”
What does that say when a children’s comedy can’t even make children laugh? In fact, the more I try to think of some of the jokes in this movie, the harder it is to actually recall any of it. At least half of the movie is packed with screaming or loud noises. And not in the amusing Adult Swim/Phil Lord and Chris Miller way.
Caveman Laa gets his very own beer, because fuck that guy. A caveman exhibit also played by Ben Stiller and who has a curious fascination with Larry as his father and happens to be a crippling dumbass, Laa brings the movie to even more of a screeching halt than that it was already halted. Laa is the “stupid idiot comic relief” elevated to a infuriating fever pitch. It’s so bad. It’s the worst running joke I’ve seen in recent memory, and I watch a lot of Family Guy.
Special effects are called “special effects” for a reason. These effects are about as far from “special” as you could get, unless by “special” you mean “SyFy.”
Worst of all, it’s boring. It’s just fucking boring. The Night at the Museum series has never been one to contain a great deal of plot. Each movie has had a basic synopsis summed up in one line, and opening up to a series of slapstick pratfalls and screaming. The sequel, Battle of the Smithsonian, at least pulled off the slapstick to such a degree that it was passable as something I could watch drunk when my roommate rented from RedBox and kind of enjoy, even though about 60% of that enjoyment involved Amy Adams wearing tight pants. This one has none of that (not even Amy Adams); it even goes light on the slapstick, and leaves behind a dry, lifeless film that has almost nothing at all of merit. Even the actors, who in the previous installments had a smidgeon of energy, here are acting as though they’ve got a gun to their heads, reading their lines with a lack of energy that itself is almost amusing.
So desperately boring and lazy, I can barely joke about it. Shout out to Carmike Cinemas for their Super Matinee, which made my ticket for this shit show only $5.75, which, while better than $8, is still money I could have spent on alcohol or put into the Salvation Army donation bucket with the dude ringing a bell or used to buy dinner for a homeless person. Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb, you are the reason a homeless person didn’t get a Wendy’s Bacon Portabella Melt on December 19th, 2014.