Trainwreck is now showing at the Garden City Cinema in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire.
I’m not overly familiar with Amy Schumer but what I had seen, I liked. So, it’s disappointing that her first lead in a feature film is such a boring and flat affair with a disjointed message.
Trainwreck is a comedy written by Schumer and directed by Judd Apatow and it’s full of jokes but I’m afraid not one of them made me laugh. I’m all for crude women but the ‘jokes’ just aren’t funny.
It felt like one skit after another with little thought for pushing the story further or delivering any real insight.
Amy’s father instilled in her and her sister from a young age that “monogamy isn’t realistic”. Something Amy believes to be true, while her sister Kim (played by Brie Larson) ignored him and is happily married with a stepson. Her father is also suffering from M.S and is now living in an assisted living facility which causes friction between the sisters as Kim wants to move him to a cheaper place.
There are quite a few story threads in the film but it’s so busy cramming lame jokes into every scene that none of the threads are ever really picked up and so the emotional punch that some of the scenes are designed to have just miss the mark.
Amy is a drinking, smoking, swearing, sexually active writer, working at one of those awful celebrity, lifestyle magazines called S’nuff, the editor of which is played by the marvellous Tilda Swinton, even she can’t save this!
Amy is assigned to write a piece about sports and her boss informs her that she’s being considered for a promotion to become Assistant Editor so there’s a lot riding on this.
Enter Bill Hader’s character Aaron, a bit of a nothing character, a nice guy but otherwise bland with his one personality trait being a fan of Uptown Girl by Billy Joel.
The racist and homophobic jokes are no doubt thought of as satire but they’re not. Personally I believe there is a way to make jokes about sexuality and race, something Sarah Silverman does to perfection but here it just feels totally out of place. The whole film feels like the sort of vehicle Shumer would poke fun at at one of her stand up shows, not something she actually wrote. Trainwreck is not a comment on entertainment aimed at women or saying something clever about gender roles in cinema.
The pacing is off, it’s too long, the cameos feel forced and why is it called Trainwreck when you consider that Amy isn’t really a mess? The film is trying it’s best to make out she is. So she drinks too much and sleeps around, big deal, her actions don’t impact anyone else and her lifestyle choices aren’t ruining her life so why make out she’s the worst woman to hook up with?
It’s this strange message that just didn’t sit well with me. At one point her character judges and mocks a troupe of dancers at a sports event, even going so far as to shout “You’re gonna lose us the right to vote!” She thinks they’re just gyrating to music and are demeaning women, it’s like she’s the epitome of the female double standard.
The whole scene stood out like a sore thumb but then those same dancers come back at the end and Amy joins in with a dance routine, all for Aaron’s benefit to prove that she can work hard, isn’t afraid to fail and to impress him. What a crock! She was up for a promotion at work, that proves she works hard, why she wants to impress bland Aaron is beyond me.
So, Trainwreck is a terribly unfunny mess of a film that has no idea what it’s trying to say and plods along for just over 2 hours – 2 hours you’ll never get back!
Have you seen Trainwreck? Agree or disagree? Let me know in the comments.
Book your tickets, if you dare, to see Trainwreck at the Garden City Cinema click here.