Year One


Directed by: Harold Ramis
Written by: Harold Ramis, Gene Stupnitsky, Lee Eisenberg
Starring: Jack Black, Michael Cera, Oliver Platt, David Cross, Vinnie Jones, Hank Azaria
Released: June 18, 2009
Grade: C+

Year One might have been funny in the year 10,000 B.C. but certainly not in today’s times.  There were a few humorous scenes in the trailer but sadly that’s about all this film has to offer.  The writers couldn’t make enough out of the limited storyline.  It feels like a spoof flick with its lame, obvious jokes.

Set it some prehistoric era, the movie tells the story of two guys named Zed (Black) and Oh (Cera) who leave their small village in search of a better life.  They go an epic journey where they encounter an assortment of silly character.  Hank Azaria plays Abraham, a man obsessed with circumcision.  Oliver Platt plays a priest intent on seducing young boys.  David Cross plays Cain, trying to set someone up for the death of his brother, Abel.

The roles don’t require much from stars Jack Black (Tropic Thunder) and Michael Cera (Juno).  Black plays yet another crazy, eccentric character.  Cera plays yet another nervous, innocent character.  I could see they were trying to make this material funny but the hill left by the screenwriters was too high to climb.

Writer-director Harold Ramis has been responsible for some create comedies over his career including Caddyshack, Ghost Busters and Groundhog Day.  I’d watch those films on any day of the week but the same can’t be said for Year One.  I’ve seen it once and that’s more than enough.