By Sandra Kraisirideja
“The Internship” has a mediocre script that cannot be saved even with the comedic talents of Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson.
Vaughn and Wilson scored a huge hit with their first collaboration, “Wedding Crashers,” in the summer of 2005, which ushered in a new era of the rated-R comedies along with “The 40-Year-Old Virgin.”
Perhaps the PG-13 rating for “The Internship” didn’t allow Vaughn—who co-wrote the screenplay with Jared Stern (“The Watch”)—to create a better script.
When Billy (Vaughn) and Nick (Wilson) lose their jobs selling high-end watches to retailers, they enter an internship competition at Google where the winners receive full-time positions at the search giant.
Both are superb salesmen from an era before the Internet and smartphones who are at their best when dealing face-to-face with people. When they arrive at Google their lot is thrown in with a group of geek outcasts.
The younger cast members suffer the most from the script. Their characters are reduced to cliches and stereotypes. There are moments of funny, sparkling dialogue but they are reserved for the grown-ups, mainly Wilson, Vaughn and Rose Byrne, who plays Wilson’s love interest.
It’s as if Vaughn really didn’t know how to write for Millennials and relied on how he thought they would talk and be by watching the CW. The script is much stronger in scenes where the younger cast members are absent.
Director Shawn Levy (“Date Night”) makes the most out of the Google landscape against which the story unfolds. Google supported the movie from the start and scenes were filmed at the campus but Georgia Tech also stood in for the corporation’s playful headquarters as well.
Production designer Tom Meyer does an excellent job creating a look and feel that matches the expectations of what people think about when they imagine a Silicone Valley tech company.
Despite the lackluster script, the comedic chemistry between Vaughn and Wilson works and it would be great to see them together again, but they should stick to R-rated material.