Impractical Jokers: The Movie ‘an unnecessary experience’

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With the beginning two months out of the year gone, Hollywood is now moving past the annual dumping grounds of terrible movies. It is a well-known fact that if a movie is thought to be unsuccessful by a studio, they release it early in the year to maybe make a little money. We are in March now and I assumed that time of the year was gone, we could look past box office failures like Dolittle and Fantasy Island. However, then came a movie I didn’t know existed until about 3 weeks ago. Impractical Jokers: The Movie is an adaptation of TruTV show that follows four friends competing in a series of challenges in which one has to do or say whatever the others tell him. This results in each member being socially embarrassed in a group of people who have no clue that they are on a TV show. So how did they adapt this into a movie? The short answer is, terribly. 

So how did they adapt this into a movie? The short answer is, terribly. ”

— Tanner Bass

The movie follows four lifelong friends, Joe, Murr, Brian “Q”, and Sal as they go on a road trip to a party thrown by early nineties pop star, Paula Abdul. The catch is that she only gave them three tickets for the gang of four, so they must on the way compete in a series of challenges to see who will not be able to go to her party. Not a half-bad way to tie a narrative into what really is a reality TV show, the problem is, however, that it’s executed fast and quick.

This film can be broken down into a quick introduction in the form of a flashback that sets the half baked conflict. The middle, where all the challenges happen. Then finally the abruptly short end. The story is of little interest to the Jokers throughout the majority of the film, not being mentioned during the challenges and with such little stakes as this movie has, so why even bother? I think it could’ve been a relatively alright movie if they cared about this portion, with more exposition and conflict. Sure it has the bare minimum of a conflict, but it’s never mentioned as much as it needs to be and is resolved in literally less time than it takes to buy the tickets for the film. I don’t understand why it didn’t take the route of a certain vulgar Johnny Knoxville series… The movie has a bad narrative and bad editing.

All the sequences that weren’t hidden cameras for the challenges were shot awfully. Not that the camera work is truly bad, it’s just the cringe-worthy editing. Every cut just goes on too long and doesn’t feel seamless with the other, holding for just a quarter of a second too long. Then, they didn’t hang the audio between each clip, causing each character to feel disconnected from one another when each of them delivered their lines. They just missed the basics of editing and it showed, causing a laughably (in a negative way) bad pace. That’s for its narrative segments however, so I will say when the self-named Tenderloins were doing their challenges, It had me laughing harder than anyone else in that empty theatre. 

That’s to be expected of course.

Four guys running around, being publicly embarrassed and purposefully awkward, is funny, but it’s nothing you wouldn’t see from the nine seasons of the show.”

— Tanner Bass

Four guys running around, being publicly embarrassed and purposefully awkward, is funny, but it’s nothing you wouldn’t see from the nine seasons of the show. They are some seriously confident men saying what they do to random people, so that must be applauded. But there’s no bigger spectacle when seeing them on the silver screen. They never take the chance to do something that wouldn’t be allowed on the show which makes it feel like they just had leftover challenges from previous seasons and just threw them together in a compilation. Granted, some words did go uncensored and a certain Joker named Murr did sacrifice his dignity for this film, but it’s not like they couldn’t have added a few bleeps and bars to make it appropriate for the small screen. I know that they filmed these segments specifically for the film, as it just looks nicer and higher quality, but it doesn’t stop the material from not filling the shoes of that higher quality equipment. The whole concept of getting reactions out of real people to decide one loser who doesn’t go to the party is seriously challenged by the ending.

Let me explain. If the narrative-driven ending is decided by random reactions of people, then how did they know what to film for the ending? Did they just plan for four separate endings? One extremely ambiguous ending that could fit the needs of each unique Tenderloin? Or did they decide the loser before ever filming? In any circumstance, the film’s ending is rushed and unfunny. What should have been thirty minutes of content, was squeezed into eight resulting in the quickest climax to resolution sequences I’ve ever seen in a movie. Throw in a random Joey Fatone cameo and the loser getting punished in a decent spectacle, this film leaves you underwhelmed. 

All in all, Impractical Jokers: The Movie is bad. It had some potential with its decent concept to make a relatively ok movie, but it just does the bare minimum. It always has this awkward self-awareness, as they seem to recognize their very niche audience and deliver something they would like. It is funny with its challenges, but that’s to be expected from them nine years after the first season.

If you are a fan of this show, wait for it to inevitably come on TruTV. If you’re looking for something to watch on TV in two years, check it out.”

— Tanner Bass

If you are a fan of this show, wait for it to inevitably come on TruTV. If you’re looking for something to watch on TV in two years, check it out. 3.5/10