An outcast comedy of good intentions but little invention, Shawn Levy’s The Internship reunites Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn in a feel-good farce that has only its setting (the Google offices) as its chief aspect of freshness. Everyone and everything else about this trumped-up comedic concoction seems cut from dozens of earlier films featuring the same losers-trying-to-be-winners scenario. It's sweet but uninspired filmmaking.
Distributed By: N/A
Video Resolution and Encode: 1080P/AVC
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Audio: English 5.1 DTS-HDMA, Spanish 5.1 DD, French 5.1 DD, Other
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
Rating: Not Rated, PG-13
Run Time: 1 Hr. 59 Min./ 2 Hr. 05 Min.
Package Includes: Blu-ray, DVD, Digital Copy, UltraVioletkeep case in slipcover
Disc Type: BD50 (dual layer)
Release Date: 10/22/2013
Longtime salesmen Billy McMahon (Vince Vaughn) and Nick Campbell (Owen Wilson) have been a dynamite team for more than a decade, but when their company goes out of business, they’re thrown into a job market that has little use for men in their 40s with their particular skill set. A wacky on-line interview for Google internship positions sends them to Mountain View, California, to face a highly competitive group of young twenty-somethings who live, eat, breathe, and sleep computer code and digital super knowledge. As fish out of water, these analog dinosaurs aren’t given much of a chance to succeed by head of employment Mr. Chetty (Aasif Mandvi), and when the potential hires are forced to form teams to compete in a series of contests with the winners being offered full-time positions at the firm, Billy and Nick are paired with the ones no one else wants on their teams: mother-dominated Yo-Yo (Tobit Raphael), cynical, uncommunicative Stuart (Dylan O’Brien), nerdy code expert Neha (Tiya Sircar), and their unhip Google mentor Lyle (Josh Brener). Naturally, things start out badly for the bunch until Billy and Nick uses their salesmanship abilities to sell these losers on the idea that they can be winners.
The Production Rating: 2.5/5
Having just reviewed Monsters University which centers on exactly the same kind of losers versus winners contest for an acceptance prize (even down to the bombastic ass who lords his expertise and the skills of his team over the losers – here played by Max Minghella as the haughty Graham), there is a feeling of déjà vu that hangs over this entire project. Within minutes of arriving, Wilson’s Nick meets the girl of his dreams (Rose Byrne playing Google executive Dana), there is an athletic component to the competition that helps the disjointed group to become a team (in this case, a quidditch match), the virginal youth are taken to a strip club to get drunk and have their first sexual experiences (this entire overlong sequence could have been cut and the film have been none the poorer for it), and the results of the competition come down to the very last contest which our heroes have scant chance of winning. It’s by-the-numbers script writing (screenplay by Vince Vaughn and Jared Stern), so its only saving grace has to be how funny are the lines, the gags, the visual jokes? In this case, the heart is there, but the jokes just aren’t very funny. Vaughn and Wilson do their improvisational best, but apart from a few quick bits (their ridiculous on-line interview which lands them the internship, Nick’s one day job as a mattress salesman, the sales job they lay on the pizza parlor owner at the climax), it’s not enough to save the day. It’s sweet, it’s pleasant, but it’s utterly predictable (all the talk throughout the film about the movie Flashdance simply forecasts what tune we’ll be hearing toward the end of the film), and Shaun Levy’s direction, while keeping things moving, stretches out the movie to two hours, unthinkable in a comedy this derivative.
Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson are so comfortable as performers together that they can practically finish each other’s sentences, and they give the same confident portrayals we’re used to seeing from them in dozens of previous films without adding anything new to the mix. Better are the bracing clutch of new faces who make up their team of underdogs: Dylan O’Brien, Tobit Raphael, Josh Brener, Tiya Sircar. Their eccentricities endear them to the viewer during the course of the movie and make spending this much time with a mediocre comedy more than palatable. Aasif Mandvi has fun with Mr. Chetty (and goes tit-for-tat with Vaughn during an obviously improvised exchange during orientation), and Rose Byrne is lovely in the curtailed romantic role of the film. Will Ferrell’s cameo as the mattress company owner has some funny gems, and Max Minghella is effective if predictably one-note as the movie’s requisite villain.
The film is framed at its theatrical 2.35:1 aspect ratio and is presented in 1080p using the AVC codec. Sharpness brings the transfer’s rating down a notch or two with inconsistencies during the film’s early going. Color is nicely handled with the early scenes being less colorful than the dazzling Disneyland of Google proves to be once the boys arrive there. Skin tones are natural throughout the running time. Black levels are fine, and contrast is consistently maintained. The film in both its PG-13 and unrated editions has been divided into 32 chapters.
Video Rating: 4/5 3D Rating: NA
The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 sound mix uses the music score and standards to fully engage the front and rear channels (the strip club scene being the most obvious example). There are some ambient sounds to be found in split channels (during the quidditch match, for instance), but they aren’t found throughout the encode, much of it more heavily focused on the front channels. Dialogue has been well recorded and has been placed in the center channel.
Audio Rating: 4/5
Unrated Edition (2:05:06, HD): the disc offers the choice of the theatrical PG-13 cut or the unrated edition which runs about six minutes longer. Basically there are some raunchy jokes during the mattress company and strip club scenes which make up the difference in the two cuts.
Special Features Rating: 2.5/5
Audio Commentary: director Shaun Levy motormouths his way through another of his typically talky commentaries all the while handling tweets from fans simultaneously.
Deleted Scenes (8:26, HD): eight scenes may be watched individually or in montage.
Any Given Monday (17:52, HD): a behind-the-scenes look at the planning, rehearsing, shooting, and editing of the quidditch match sequence in the picture.
Theatrical Trailer (2:26, HD)
Promo Trailers (HD): The Wolverine, The Heat, The Way Way Back
DVD/Digital Copy: disc and instruction sheet enclosed in the package.
The Internship, a fish-out-of-water/underdog comedy, won’t offer viewers any story they haven’t seen in scores of other movies, but it’s pleasantly unobjectionable and might make a decent night’s rental entertainment.
Overall Rating: 2.5/5
Reviewed By: Matt Hough
Support HTF when you buy this title: