It’s 9am on a Saturday morning and you’ve been out drinking all of Friday night. Your hangover feels like an epic punishment from the gods. Now is the perfect time for the demon children from next door to be unleashed to play on their trampoline. Bounce. Bounce. Bounce. It’s too early for this – surely their parents have more sense than to send them out so early... Sound familiar? It may just be my horrible and often repeated experience, but living peacefully along side your neighbours can be a challenge - so it's easy to see how the plot of the new comedy 'Bad Neighbours' came about. But this is Hollywood, and these are the neighbours from hell, so prepare to embark on an outrageous and hilariously disgusting look into the world of the All–American frat house.
Seth Rogen and Rose Byrne play an average early-thirties couple who had a wild ride during their college years but have now succumbed to the devastating realities of life with a child and a mortgage. They stare at the vacant house next door, dreaming for an interracial gay couple with a baby to move in. What they get instead are the boys of the Delta Psi Beta fraternity, followed by a grand royal bout of partying and deception from both sides, as the rivals try to outwit, outplay and outlast the other.
This is a no-holds-barred comedy, which is what we have come to expect out of actors like Rogen, but what is more interesting to see is Byrne really find her feet in the same genre. It was an interesting decision to have her retain her natural Australian accent, but this only works in favour of the comedy that she delivers. Zac Efron is certainly growing up – both in stature and in acting ability. While he might have been the only thing going for ‘Are We Officially Dating?’, here he adds to the brilliant ensemble of comedic actors including Dave Franco, Lisa Kudrow and that guy who can’t seem to move on from playing McLovin.
The film features eye candy aplenty, with the almost constantly shirtless frat men’s hazing, partying, drinking, drug taking and sexual exploits. Unfortunately on the other side of the fence, we have what is one of the more awkward sex scenes ever witnessed on film between Rogen and Byrne. But that is okay – it only helps the film's constant sense of debauchery. What will probably work in favour of ‘Bad Neighbours’ is its ability to appeal to two different markets: the young twenty-somethings who can’t stop YOLO-ing and the thirty-somethings who just wish they could YOLO again. Quite possibly ‘Bad Neighbours’ could be the ‘American Pie’ of this generation.
RUN TIME: 01h 37m
|Andrew J. Cohen|