[pullquote cite=”” type=”left, right”][amazon text=Amazon&template=carousel&chan=That Film Guy&asin=B0068N6TXK][/pullquote] Hall Pass is the latest film from the Farrelly Brothers. Their success began with Dumb and Dumber and then their most famous work to date, There’s Something About Mary, released in 1998, was a huge box office success taking $368million and catapulting Cameron Diaz and Ben Stiller into the comedy a-list. Since then the brother duo have made some passable comedies (Me, Myself and Irene and Kingpin) as well as some duds (Shallow Hal, Stuck on You and Fever Pitch). Hall Pass falls into the second category.
The story follows friends Rick (a very haggard-looking Owen Wilson) and Fred (Jason Sudeikis) who are constantly caught checking out other women by their wives. Tired of their indiscretions, the wives give the husbands a ˜hall pass’ for a week to get out of marriage and do whatever they want. In classic film fashion the men struggle to find women to have sex with, whilst the wives seemingly have the perfect ˜hall pass week.’
Characters are introduced and removed throughout and there’s a realisation that none of them are interesting, and in some cases decidedly unpleasant, which immediately stops the audience from engaging in their stupid and disappointing behaviour. As you’d expect from a Farrelly Brothers film, there are gross-out moments but they sit firmly at odds with the dull lives of the main characters. The one bright spot in the film is Stephen Merchant, who has about 5 lines to deliver and nails them all. In fact the only real laugh comes at a dream sequence of his after the credits roll, which just highlight what a wasted talent he is.
It seems that the film could’ve been written with Vince Vaughn and Will Ferrell instead of Sudeikis and Richard Jenkins in mind. This may have made the film a lot funnier, but the script would still have been terrible and the bitter taste left in your mouth at the end would remain.