Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn re-team in Shawn Levy‘s latest comedy/Google commercial The Internship. The film might lack creativity and originality, but it makes up for that and then some with its perfect casting, on-spot comedic delivery and always positive message that’s loud and clear by the film’s fancy ending credits. The Internship is nothing new, but it’s still a well-made comedy that juggles various obvious messages with a certain level of charm and heart that should have no problem winning you over.
Billy (Vince Vaughn) and Nick (Owen Wilson) are two hard-working businessmen that are not afraid to roll their sleeves up to get the work done. They work excellent together and have done so for years. Their strengths are thinking outside the box, being able to sell virtually anything in person and lastly being able to always turn a negative into a positive — no matter how clueless they are about the topic at hand.
This has worked well for them for most of their careers until now. The modern internet age is cancelling them out at an alarming rate and before it’s too late they both decide to enlist in an internship with Google, despite barely knowing how to turn on a computer at the local library.
Now, Billy and Nick must somehow find a way to land full-time jobs at Google. Their competition is hundreds of equally hungry college students that actually know a thing or two about Google, computers, coding and basic stuff for anyone looking to land a job in the computer world. Can Billy and Nick adapt to the rapidly changing world around them or are they truly dinosaurs without a useful purpose?
Shawn Levy‘s latest feel-good comedy approaches these questions with lots of laughter and fun. A film like The Internship on paper sounds about ten years too late. The trailers in my mind have been cut accordingly, but most have been knocking this film as nothing but an outdated Google commercial that is far from relevant. Levy’s film certainly doesn’t redefine the genre, but it works a lot better than those gross-out throwaway comedies that have been populating the cinemas as of late.
The Internship is a film with a gigantic heart and it isn’t afraid to show it. The themes are obvious and rarely underplayed, but that really doesn’t matter. It’s a kind-hearted film that gets by mostly on its good graces and fantastic chemistry between the two leads: Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson.
Vaughn and Wilson pick up almost exactly where Wedding Crashers sort of left off. The two are the best of friends that do every living thing together. They bring their brand of zany, mostly idiotic and nonsensical humor and can-do spirit to Google with a likable intensity that just can’t be matched. Wilson and Vaughn are two of the nicest guys ever to pop up on the big screen together and that alone gives The Internship a major advantage.
Watching them spit ball ideas is always a treat and I even found their life-lessons for the youths of the film to be honest and sincere, despite how poorly obvious everything was laid out. The entire film moves exactly how you’d expect, with every single geek or nerd stereotype getting filled by a member of their intern group.
It’s unfortunate that Levy and his writers (Vaughn and Jared Stern) couldn’t come up with something a little fresher, but that feeling of predictability actually makes the film a little better.
It’s hard to explain, but knowing where the film is going at all times and essentially being okay with that makes The Internship feel like a safe, but extremely watchable film. It’s comforting knowing that everything is going to be alright, despite the film’s various minor plot hitches that keep our main characters back from succeeding.
Sometimes it’s okay to feel comfortable knowing where a film like this is going. It’s rare, but it works so well because of the comedy and the acting.
The jokes here are almost always great. The only real killer is that some of them feel a little dated and far-fetched for a couple of guys that are called dinosaurs, but aren’t really that old. It’s difficult watching Vaughn and Wilson not have any idea who the X-Men are, but it doesn’t make the gag any less entertaining. This just shows how well Vaughn and Wilson can react to so-so material.
There’s enough “geek” material and references to please virtually anyone out there. I smiled at the Foursquare and Instagram mentions, while others went crazy over the numerous Android, Apple and Windows mentions. The Internship might dust over the hardcore coding lingo or the real techy side of the computer world, but it never truly offends on purpose. It’s a film above anything else and not a how-to guide for those looking to dive into the world of computers or technology.
The biggest problem The Internship faces is its running time. The film is a little lengthy at times, stretching certain unneeded scenes past their expiration date.
The film gets away with a lot for a PG-13 film. I was surprised by just how far Levy was able to go without reaching that R-rating level. There’s a lot of borderline material that surprisingly stuck onto the final cut and I’m glad, because if the film were any tamer it would have been a disaster.
The Internship is nothing new. People that have been bored with the marketing are not going to like this. It won’t change your mind and will instead just piss you off even more, because everything about the film is familiar and safe. But that’s also why it works so well. Shawn Levy manages to direct a film that’s surprisingly funny and almost always positive.
Sometimes a film like this is exactly what is needed, especially in a culture that’s so obsessed with dark and serious. It’s okay to be able to sit back and laugh without ever having to over-think anything. The Internship exists for just that reason. It’ll make you laugh and have you walk out of the theater with a smile on your face and positive energy flowing. It’s a film about being yourself, friendship, growth, accepting change and learning to approach everything in life with a positive attitude.
Call it corny or call it stupid, but don’t accuse it of not having a heart or a purpose outside of advertising for Google. The Internship is plenty relevant and says a lot — not just about today’s movie-going landscape, but also about America’s current working climate and just how uncertain everything is. Nothing is for sure anymore, yet a movie like The Internship can all but guarantee a good time for those looking to escape for a few short hours.
The Internship – 7.5/10