Monday, October 23, 2017

The D Train (2015)

Number Rolled: 33
Movie Name/Year: The D Train (2015)
Tagline: Every reunion needs a hero.
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Length: 101 minutes
Rating: R
Production Companies: Ealing Studios Entertainment, Ealing Studios, Electric Dynamite, Londinium Films, Rip Cord Productions, Rough House Pictures, Scott Pictures
Producer: David Bernad, Jack Black, Peter Fruchtman, Beau J. Genot, Jody Hill, Aigerim Jakisheva, Michelle Lankwarden, Scott LaStaiti, Ben Latham-Jones, Priyanka Mattoo, Danny McBride, Matthew Medlin, Dylan Russell, James Spring, Scott Steindorff, Barnaby Thompson, Michael J. Urann, Mike White
Director: Andrew Mogel, Jarrad Paul
Writer: Jarrad Paul, Andrew Mogel
Actors: Jack Black, James Marsden, Kathryn Hahn, Jeffrey Tambor, Russell Posner, Henry Zebrowski, Kyle Bornheimer, Mike White, Corrina Lyons, Donna Duplantier, Charlotte Gale, Denise Williamson, Han Soto, Danielle Greenup, Dermot Mulroney, Nicole Barre, Adria Tennor
Stunts: John L. Armijo

Blurb from Netflix: A loser in charge of planning his high school class’s 20-year reunion thinks he’s scored a major coup when he gets a marginally famous alum to attend.

Selina’s Point of View:
I found this film to be incredibly awkward. With how easily I’m affected by cringe, it was just painful to watch.

With Jack Black (Goosebumps, The Big Year, Kung Fu Panda) involved, you have to assume there’ll be some slapstick or cringe… but he usually has some decent comedic timing to balance it out. At least enough to offset the kind of comedy that I don’t really enjoy. I’m not his biggest fan, but I don’t often actively avoid his work.

I didn’t see a lot of that balance here.

In fact, the last thirty minutes were so heavily cringe-inducing that I had to pause several times just to get through it.

For some people, that’s the kind of comedy they go for, and that’s cool. If that’s your thing, then good on you. For me? It was pure torture. I don’t find much comedy in heavy, unrelenting, cringe.

This may be a hilarious film from someone else’s perspective. I just don’t see it from where I’m sitting. My advice is to judge for yourself if you’re the kind of person that likes this kind of comedy. It’s so out of my wheelhouse that I probably shouldn’t even attempt to judge.

Cat’s Point of View:
I think we can all agree that Jack Black (The Brink, Drunk History, The Polka King) movies are generally a bit off-the-wall, and that’s largely the brilliance of them. He consistently delivers funny. I can’t even think of any film of his that I haven’t liked. This one was no exception.

This movie had some unexpected quirks that put a whole different spin on my initial expectations. I think that helped elevate things beyond just another comedy. That being said, I honestly don’t remember the trailer or hearing anything about the movie back in 2015 when it was released.

Be that as it may, it’s definitely worth a watch – when there are no kids around. There’s some explicit language that’s a bit beyond random profanity, but the movie is fairly devoid of nudity.

Black’s character was one I could relate to on a more profound level than I was expecting. It really blows to feel like you’re on the outside looking in. Sometimes you feel like you would do just about anything to change it, and the temptation is there to cross lines that probably should be left alone. I’ve walked in those shoes a time or two.

I really enjoyed the dynamic between Black and James Marsden (2 Guns, The Best of Me, Wander Over Yonder). Marsden has always come across as a ‘cool guy’ much like this character. He’s great at bringing the hint of edginess while emoting with such soulful eyes. 

This might not be the absolute best film I’ve seen from the pair, but it certainly delivers a fun time. I laughed, face-palmed, and even fussed at the screen a few times. It’s definitely worth a shot if you’re up for catching a gem that flew under the mainstream radar.

Speech Available: English
Subtitles Available: English

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 50%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 23%
Metascore – 55/100
Metacritic User Score – 5.5/10
IMDB Score – 5.0/10

Trust the Dice: Selina’s RatingN/A
Trust the Dice: Cat’s Rating3.5/5

Movie Trailer:

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