MacGruber is the latest Saturday Night Live skit to get the full movie treatment. Like those that went before it, this means the movie's entertainment value is stretched thin over the length of a feature film. There are a few fairly funny jokes in the movie but not nearly enough to cover the running length. As for storyline and plot, well there's that skit thing again.
MacGruber is a spoof of the old MacGyver TV series that ran in the mid-eighties and starred Richard Dean Anderson. The hero didn't use guns but rather fashioned weapons from ordinary household goods and materials. MacGruber (Will Forte) is supposed to have the same talent but we never get to see him do anything inventive except tear people's throats out.
At the start of the movie MacGruber is recruited by Colonel James Faith (Powers Boothe) to hunt down the nefarious villain Dieter Von Cunth (Val Kilmer). MacGruber has a personal reason to want to take him down as Cunth killed his wife (Maya Rudolph). Colonel Faith convinces MacGruber to take his aide, Lt Piper (Ryan Phillipe), as part of his team which also includes Vicki St Elmo (Kristen Wiig).
The rest of the movie concerns the team's efforts to track down Cunth and a huge nuclear missile he has aimed at Washington, DC. None of it makes much sense and in order to enjoy it you would have to find each and every crude remark by MacGruber hilarious. Not many will.
The profanity in the film is so unending and the crude sex jokes so gross that any attempt at real humor is overlooked. Maybe this works for the Saturday Night Live crowd but for audiences across the country it will be a turn-off.
Will Forte is not a charismatic leading man. He doesn't have the natural charm or necessary wit to hold anyone's attention. Wiig is better as his leading lady but you soon tire of her too. That leaves poor Ryan Phillipe to carry the film, and he makes a valiant effort. The sad thing is he has/had a chance at a serious career in serious movies so seeing him in such a dud as this makes your heart go out to him. Especially when he has to demean his talent in order to try to get a laugh.
The film is rated R for profanity, violence, nudity and sexual situations.
Those who found the MacGruber sketches on SNL hilarious might get a few chuckles from this film. But for everyone else the laughs are few and far between, while the endless profanity and smutty jokes take center stage.
I scored MacGruber a do it yourself 3 out of 10.