By Sandra Kraisirideja
“Observe and Report” is one of those comedies that will gain a bigger following on DVD than it did when it was released earlier this year in April.
It’s a black comedy with a dark storyline and unlikeable characters that doesn’t shy away from being negative or try to offer something redeeming for audiences to cling to. Writer-director Jody Hill isn’t afraid to go to places comedically that shouldn’t be funny and yet he somehow makes it work.
In “Observe and Report” Seth Rogen stars as Ronnie Barnhardt, a mall security guard who takes himself and his job a little too seriously. When a flasher terrorizes both customers and employees at the mall Ronnie takes it upon himself to capture the suspect despite having no crime solving skills.
Mall security guards are the butt of countless jokes and are usually not respected, but Hill has written Ronnie as a person who believes in what he is doing. There’s never a scene where Ronnie doubts himself or has a pity party about the realities of his like, like the fact that his dad left when he was a kid and that his mom is an alcoholic.
Ronnie is overweight, uneducated and quick-tempered; yet his refusal to back down is inspiring. He’s fearless and doesn’t consider himself to be weak. He commands respect and refuses to see that other people think he’s a joke.
Hill has written and directed two other freatures and collaborates frequently with Danny McBride, one of Rogen’s co-stars in “Pineapple Express.” Hill and McBride are among the co-creators of “Eastbound & Down” on HBO.
Hill’s dialogue in “Observe and Report” is not outwardly funny and often falls under the, “That was so wrong,” category of comedy.
“Observe & Report” is available on DVD and Blu-ray on Sept. 22.