Imagine that you are an unsuccessful, uneducated, 40-something man-child who doesn’t know a thing about technology. And you were just let go from your job – from the only thing you were ever really good at. On top of all that the economy is bad, there are hardly any jobs available and even where they are, no one wants to hire a man in their 40’s. Sounds bad, right? Not really, no. In a world of Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson you have every chance of getting an internship – not just anywhere, but at Google! – and eventually even a job. Yes, let’s keep the American Dream alive, people!
I could go on forever about this ridiculous script. Another thing (besides the obvious message the film tries to deliver) that really bothered me was that almost all supporting characters were painfully stereotypic. We have an arrogant and pretentious British guy, so mean that he could easily be a long lost brother of Draco Malfoy. Then there’s an Asian geek/mathematic genius with very strict and conservative parents who only care about his professional success and don’t allow him any social life. There’s also a gloomy, “I’m so above you all” hipster guy, because let’s face it – it’s 2013 and it’s hip to have a character like that (or at least that’s probably what Vince Vaughn thought when he wrote this brilliant screenplay). And finally, there’s a character of 30-something career woman who needs to find a man to complete her self-realization. And this man is, of course, no other than infantile, incompetent Owen Wilson.
Anyhow, the main point of the film, hidden behind this badly written »comedy«, is to maintain the illusion of American Dream. There’s one scene where the younger members of the Wilson/Vaughn team are worrying about their future – because no matter what schools you attend and how much time and effort you put into education, it is not guaranteed that you’ll land a good job. American Dream is dead. But is it really? Wilson and Vaughn try to comfort the audience and show them that the American Dream is still very much alive. You don’t need any education, any experience, you don’t even have to know how to work with a computer to land a job at Google (or anywhere for that matter) and to turn your life around and start from scratch. No matter how old you are – everything is possible! If you’re a middle-aged white male from a middle-class family, of course.
Directed by: Shawn Levy
Written by: Vince Vaughn and Jared Stern
Starring: Vince Vaughn, Owen Wilson, Rose Byrne
Running Time: 119 minutes