Ricky's Film Reviews

Bringing you honest reviews of recent releases

Sorry to Bother You

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In an alternate present-day version of Oakland, telemarketer Cassius Green discovers a magical key to professional success, propelling him into a universe of greed.

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Cast

Lakeith Stanfield – Cassius “Cash” Green

Tessa Thompson – Detroit

Armie Hammer – Steve Lift

Jermaine Fowler – Salvador

Danny Glover – Langston

Steven Yeun – Squeeze

David Cross – Cash’s “white voice”

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Sorry I Bothered

What on fuck’s earth did I go and watch on December 7th?
I must stress that before seeing Sorry to Bother You I looked it up online, and the description of its plot wasn’t even similar to the utter shite that happened on screen. I read something about an employee of a company receiving the key to the executive bathroom, where his life soon changes..

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Absolutely nothing of the sort. Oh Cassius enters a bathroom alright, but at no point does a member of his organisation actually hand him a key in a pivotal moment leading to the supposedly ‘glorious’ world that lies beyond the loos. This is what I was waiting for; the protagonist being handed a key. Which leads to him unlocking a door and stepping into something incredible. Didn’t happen. Instead, you’re faced with Cassius going to a party and simply hanging around – until he casually strolls into a bathroom. Imagine Titanic without the iceberg and grazing an underwater coral reef instead..

I felt miffed about this.

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The moment the voice dubbing kicked in was cringeworthingly embarrassing. Not for me, embarrassing for the producers. The idea is that Cassius improves his conversation skills with clients in his new job by using a “white voice”. So the film suddenly jumps from satyrical to stupid, with Stanfield giving a performance so enthusiastic behind awful audio effects that it becomes almost detestable. These are your classic, ‘too obviously dubbed’ scenes that no effort has been put in to and end up with the actor’s mouth curling around sentences being played from a recording. Some films are quite convincing when using voiceover work. Sorry to Bother You just fails here. I’m no voice coach but Jesus – even the actor’s throat wasn’t resonating.
Too critical? Or just honest?

This film is supposedly set in an alternate reality, but I couldn’t spot many factors separating it from this one. The protagonist lives in a garage with a sliding door that goes up and down.
Wow.
His girlfriend’s day job is standing on street corners being a performance artist – but looks more like she’s having an epileptic fit on MDMA.
Wow.
The offices of RegalView are standard everyday offices with no distinguishing features of an alternate reality, although the employees do sit in rows.
Wow.
Cassius enters a strange bathroom where he discovers beings beyond his comprehension..
Wow. Doesn’t officially make it an alternate reality does it?

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Aside from the terrible miming to a voice dub, Sorry to Bother You fails to reveal its main concept until the final half hour or so. It plods along to show how Cassius succeeds in his new job, but the whole ‘bathroom discovery’ crap doesn’t happen for a long time. And when it does, it is weird; I’m certain a few viewers out there will wonder if someone spiked their coffee.

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Alright

I think “alright” sums this movie up in my opinion. But there are definitely going to be people out there who love it due to how ‘different’ it is. If I could point out its positives, I’d have to say Sorry to Bother You remains a steady cult-like movie that misses the mark but gives its audience a relatable character whose fluid story is simple to follow. Money issues, new job, relationship niggles, pushy friends and relatives.. it’s all there to evoke empathy in a world of employment war – a theme running in the background.
I suppose its winning streak is escapism, yet not being overly different to our world considering Cassius’s universal problems.

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Good god it was a struggle to pen something good about this one.
Sorry to Bother You was nowhere near as engaging as I wanted it to be. I imagined a dystopian sort of land, where the lead character’s world had quirky differences to ours – like most other productions set in a parrallel universe.
It didn’t. In fact, I think the only noticeable feature was one of his office’s vending machines being a bit odd. That’s right. It was a vending machine that stood out for me during this movie. Regardless of its sinister going’s-on beyond the bathroom, it’s just not worth the watch. And its final few minutes prove this by being one of the most eye-rolling scenes in recent cinema.

A statement in a review I saw online recently mentioned two words which made me instantly pause: BLACK MIRROR.
Someone has actually likened Sorry to Bother You to the BAFTA Film Award-winning television series, and I can categorically state that this is pure bullshit. This movie holds none of the darkly satirical elements Black Mirror did; if similar in any way it can only be the fact that humans are being altered. And at risk of ruining the movie for you, I won’t elaborate. But you’ll see what I mean. Black Mirror was – and is – in it’s own right an exceptional piece of work, outdoing something like Sorry to Bother You by miles.

This 2018 attempt at strange humour doesn’t even come close to Charlie Brooker’s mark on television history, and to suggest it is similar is an absolute insult.

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This entry was posted on February 24, 2019 by .
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