Bucky Larson: Born To Be A Star review

Starring Nick Swardson and Christina Ricci, Bucky Larson's a comedy about a man who dreams of being a porn star. Here's Ron's review...

Bucky Larson (Nick Swardson) finds himself down in the dumps after a disastrous day at work. He gets fired from his bagboy job and returns home to the comforts of home cooking and Yahtzee with his parents, who live in a modest house within modest means. His friends invite him over to cheer him up. Their plan? Show Bucky dirty movies, and let the 70s sleaze make him feel better. There’s just one problem: the movie stars Bucky’s parents.

That’s right. Jeremiah and Debbie Larson (Edward Herrmann and Miriam Flynn) are a pair of 70s porn legends, named Jim Spraysium and Rosie Bush, which means that Bucky Larson is born to be a star.

He hops the bus, heads to California, and immediately befriends a friendly, cute waitress named Kathy McGee (Christina Ricci) and starts to make his way into the adult world. Unfortunately for Bucky, he’s not… ahem, equipped enough to be a porn star, and apparently he’s barely equipped at all judging by the laughing reaction he gets at the party of Dick Shadow (Stephen Dorff).

Bucky is humiliated, thrown in the pool, and removed from the premises, but his story catches the attention of a former drug addict and nine-times-divorced loser named Miles Deep (Don Johnson), who manages to turn Bucky Larson into an unlikely star. Will fame go to his Prince Valiant-haircutted head? Will his new enemy, Dick Shadow, ruin his life?

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More importantly, will anyone care about this terrible film?

There’s nothing worse than a comedy that isn’t funny, and using that criteria, Bucky Larson might be the worst movie I’ve seen all year. At my sparsely-attended afternoon show, the number of times people laughed can be counted on one hand, and the number of people who laughed can also be counted on one hand. I’m far from a comedy snob, and I can admit that gross things can be funny, but this was gross and not funny. Judging by the stone-faced reactions from others in the theater, I am not alone.

It’s not that the filmmakers don’t try to provoke comic reactions, but that’s part of the problem. They set up skits and provide the skeleton of where jokes go, but nothing funny actually happens. Repeat this for an entirely-too-long 96 minutes, waste some great supporting actors in terrible roles, make me feel bad for Don Johnson and Christina Ricci, and then please let me go home.

I guess you can’t expect much. The director of this particular horror, Tom Brady, is the guy behind The Comebackers and The Hot Chick, so maybe he made Bucky Larson in an attempt to make his other movies look hilarious. I can’t imagine anything worse than this. It’s not terribly made, technically, and the pacing is about as good as you can expect in a movie that feels like hours upon hours of torture, but the script is just… ugh.

The script, by Nick Swardson, Adam Sandler, and Allen Covert, is just a horrible mash-up of stale jokes, clichés, and hatefulness.

Bucky has a prairie accent, so let’s make fun of him! Bucky has buck teeth, so let’s make fun of him! Bucky has a terrible haircut, so let’s make fun of him! Bucky is well-meaning and dumb, let’s make fun of him! Bucky has a tiny penis, so let’s make fun of him!

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The trailers give away the whole story, and the trailers are probably the most obnoxious thing I’ve ever seen on television. It doesn’t help that the whole movie feels incredible mean-spirited and hateful. Even the relatively good people, like Don Johnson’s Miles Deep, do and say terrible things to/about Bucky.

Raunchy can be funny. Stupid can be funny. Even hateful can be funny in small doses. Bucky Larson: Born To Be a Star is not funny using any comedy metric. If anything, this movie functions as an anti-comedy, designed to remove laughter from the world.

US correspondent Ron Hogan hates himself for having watched Bucky Larson. This movie should be 1984’d out of existence. Find more by Ron daily at Shaktronics and PopFi.


1 out of 5