Andy Samberg got famous from being on Saturday Night Live and doing “Digital Shorts” in which he did random ass things (like rap about The Chronicles of Naria) that were downright hilarious. (Who could forget the immortal “Dick in a Box”?) With Hot Rod, Samberg tries to parlay his comic sensibilities into a chance at movie stardom. The results not only aren’t funny, but border on unwatchable.
Samberg stars as a guy named Rod who does stunts on his moped unsuccessfully. He has an extremely odd relationship with his stepfather (Ian McShane from Code Name:
The plot is paper thin, but in a comedy like this one, the plot doesn’t matter as much as the laughs. Unfortunately, I didn’t laugh once during the entire movie. Even a bad Digital Short is good for at least one chuckle, but this movie was pathetic. It wasn’t even funny enough to sustain a 90 second sketch, let alone a 90 minute movie.
Consider the scene where Rod falls down a mountain. And falls. And falls. And falls. Not funny. Or the scene where he and his stepbrother endlessly repeat variations of the word “cool beans”. Again, not funny. Not to mention the fact that all his lame stunts wouldn’t have cut it on a rerun of Jackass.
Samberg can be funny as he’s proven time and again on Saturday Night Live, but here in this movie, he falls harder on his face than his character does. His performance is amiable enough and I really wanted to like the movie, but Hot Rod is a total misfire. The supporting cast (which includes Bill Hader, Isla Fisher, and Chris Parnell) all have enormous comedic talents, but like Samberg, they are all thoroughly wasted in this film.