I’d like to end my SIFF dispatches on a sunny and happier note. Billed as a The Hangover-styled movie, Going to Brazil is a French alcohol-fueled comedy about sexual assault and murder. Actually, this has less in common with The Hangover and more in common with Bachelorette. Three French female friends reluctantly travel in Rio for a fourth friend’s wedding, after that friend had ditched the group without notice. But, everybody here is kind of bitchy. The bride totally ditches the friends in Brazil when she is pulled out of town by her Brazilian friends for a remote bachelorette party. Meanwhile, the four friends find a party where one of them is sexually assaulted and accidentally kills the guy in self defense. Guess who the guy is? Anyways, drug dealers, mob bosses, and government agents are involved in the friends’ journey to get back to France.
Your enjoyment of this movie will depend on how much you enjoy asshole characters trying to figure a way out of their OUTRAGEOUS situation. Once I tuned into the acidic channel this movie was operating on (and not the same outrageous tone as The Hangover), I found myself enjoying the women sniping at each other. Whether they were ruining the wedding by arguing over who needs to comfort the bride to trying to figure out what is the best way to deal with the female hardass drug kingpin, their sniping grew on me as the movie went on.
But, I also think some of this is lost in translation. There’s a surprise guest that pops out in a scene in much the same manner as Ken Jeong did in The Hangover. When Ken Jeong popped out of the trunk in The Hangover, it was not a star making role; many comedy fans had already been seeing him in Pineapple Express, Knocked Up, The Office and Community. Here, the guy who pops up is nobody I recognized (but he may be familiar to French viewers). Herein lies the rub…how much of this movie is dependent on people knowing the actors/actresses? And how much is from the script? I didn’t know anybody in this movie, yet I found it funny. Still, I wonder.
Anyways, I don’t have much to say about Going to Brazil other than its a decent lark but one I’ll probably forget by this time next year. It’s the perfect type of movie for sitting in an air-conditioned theater and seeing something randomly delightful.