Take Me Home Tonight, the latest flashback to the 80′s hits theaters this weekend with a handful of cocaine, a lot of references to times gone by and at best, a few chuckles. I didn’t go into this film with high hopes and I was right to do so…

The Players:

  • Director: Michael Dowse
  • Screenplay: Jackie Filgo and Jeff Filgo
  • Story By: Topher Grace and Gordon Kaywin
  • Actors: Topher Grace, Anna Faris, Dan Fogler, Teresa Palmer, Chris Pratt, Michael Biehn, Jeanie Hackett, Lucy Punch, Demetri Martin
  • Original Music by: Trevor Horn
  • Cinematography by: Terry Stacey

The Plot:

An aimless college grad finds the girl of his dreams in his grasp, but only with a little lie. He, his twin sister and their best friend struggle with their burgeoning adulthood over the course of the night.

The Good:

  • Music: Not exactly sure how much “original music” was in this bad boy, but you have to love a throw-back to just about every classic 80′s romance song (so watch this or just watch a John Hughes film).
  • Lucy Punch: It’s great when a woman truly embraces her mad, hysterical side — as long as she does it on the big screen so that you don’t have to deal with it. Punch seems to have mastered the comedy in all different types of crazy/trashy women and for me she was probably one of the most well-rounded and comedic characters on screen.

The Bad:

  • Forced: Everything from the story to a number of the jokes felt forced. The story arch is sooo cliched and instead of playing it off as something ironic, they embrace it and end up making a film we’ve seen so many times before in the 90′s and early 2000′s. Something about this film feels like they tried to resurrect it from a failed comedy, and despite a few somewhat fun moments, it’s basically a stapled together rom-com without any solid laughs that tries to take what other films have had success with and reuse it — only they’re not clever enough nor do they have enough of a clear vision to really pull anything off.
  • Audience Tested: This film just reeks of someone testing it for audiences, letting them decide what “should be in the film” and then finding a way to add it in, nothing feels like it really was there because it was meant to be a part of the story and ends up disappointing audiences instead of pleasing.
  • Cliches to the MAX: Hot girl meets nerdy guy who would do anything to be with her? Check. Crazy sidekick that gets involved in “wild” things and has some good one-liners? Yeap! Telling a lie that will later cause the other half to walk out… but not for that long? Double check. Our hero doing something incredibly stupid for no real reason other than a cheesy line said earlier? Check, check, check! – It’s all there and not in a good way.

Overall:

If you’re feeling in the mood to revisit the 80′s, you’re much better off streaming a John Hughes film or blasting Eddie Money from your speakers and singing along (blow is not recommended, but only you can make that decision) than checking out this film. It feels like a lot of old jokes told in a lot of old ways with all the cliches you can muster. Save it for a sick day.

Rating: 3/10

Take Me Home Tonight in theaters March 4th.

Trailer:

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