out of Five
Running time: 80
Desperately unamusing comedy that lurches clumsily from one tedious spoof to the next, under the mistaken impression that just referencing a film is enough to get laughs.
What's it all about?
The tagline for Epic Movie says that it's, From the people who brought you Date Movie, as if that were anything to boast about. The plot, such as it is, revolves around four orphans (posh Brit Adam Campbell, ditzy redhead Jayma Mays, angry Kal Penn and sassy Faune A. Chambers), who are brought together when they win tickets to Willy's Chocolate Factory.
However, when Willy (Crispin Glover) tries to make them part of the chocolate, they escape through a mysterious wardrobe and wind up in the land of Gnarnia, where they have to defeat the White Bitch (Jennifer Coolidge). Along the way they get help from an aging Harry Potter (Kevin McDonald), some rubbish X-Men, Captain Jack Swallows (Darrell Hammond) and half-man, half-lion Aslo (Fred Willard).
This is a film so bad that it may well be the reason that its own distribution company refused to show it to critics before its release. It wouldn't hard to see why, as there's not a single funny joke in the entire film.
The writers are obviously convinced that just including a scene from a well known movie (and there are plenty, ranging from Snakes On A Plane to Nacho Libre) or inflicting pain on a celebrity lookalike (squashing Paris Hilton, punching Ashton Kutcher) is enough to get laughs. It isn't.
The actors do their best but you end up feeling horribly embarrassed for them, particularly Fred Willard and Kal Penn, both of whom deserve much better than this. To add insult to injury, the actual film runs for a mere 66 minutes, with 14 minutes of credits at the end.
In a word, no. This is lazily written, insulting rubbish and it's unquestionably one of the worst films of the year. Avoid like your life depended on it.