Year One (2009) Poster


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Enjoyable stupidity!
drakesh720 September 2010
I don't understand why some people dismiss this movie as stupid. Isn't that what comedy is usually about. Aristotle himself says that comedy should deal with the "ridiculous". The part where Black's character Zed eats the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge and within seconds feels himself "more intelligenter", is hilarious. He starts ruminating like a philosopher and comes to the conclusion that "everything is just so weeeird". Of course, all this is for comic purpose. So who are more stupid? The makers of the movie who make such scenes in a comedy, which being low brow is not really to be taken seriously, just enjoyed. Or the ones in real life who actually read about such a tree and believe it to be true. It's a comedy. Just enjoy it for laughs.
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An underrated gem
Moonspring19 November 2010
When Year One came out, I missed it in the theater. It didn't seem to last long. People didn't seem to receive it all that well either. Considering I'm not fond of either of the actors in the two main roles, I really wanted to see this film. When I finally got around to watching it, I now understand why it struck a chord with me.

Without ever claiming to be a tribute to Mel Brooks, that's exactly what it ended up as. If you liked History of the World Part One you will like Year One as our two cave men progress up through the early years of human civilization and culture, encountering various biblical figures and getting themselves in and out of various tight spots.

It was really a fun little film that I think most all fans of Mel Brooks would appreciate. It is as much a nod to JudeoChristian history as it also pans it. It is a nod to Mel Brooks without being a complete copy cat of Mr. Brooks. It is meant to be a romp and not a serious film.

People who brushed it off should give it a second chance and not try to over analyze or read to deep into it and just have a little fun. I gave it an 8, which is saying a lot from a person who doesn't like either lead.
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Exactly what it should have been, yet cruelly underrated.
raidersfan85821 June 2009
When I first saw the in theater preview for this movie, I was extremely excited. I went home and got onto Facebook and became a fan of the movie, which provided me with updates containing every video pertaining to Year One that was out there. I saw all of these videos and laughed hysterically, but I began to get a feeling that the movie would consist of what was in the previews and be nothing more than around 15 minutes of funny dragged out over a 90 minute period of time.

I was wrong.

When the movie started, I began to become even more worried I would hate it because within the first 20 minutes of the movie, at least 3/4 of the things seen in the previews were already said. I figured it was going to drag on from there. To my great relief, it did not at all. The entire hour and a half of the movie was constant laughing. The way Black and Cera got themselves into so much trouble and managed to get out of it every time was perfect. The ridiculous yet hilarious references to The Bible and how things that exist today were created were perfect. The movie was exactly what it was supposed to be: a laugh out loud comedy that was only meant to entertain.

I am still baffled as to why people keep bashing this movie. Comments like "Worst Movie of the Decade" anger me... What were people expecting with this movie? A heart warming story with a compelling plot and serious action? It is like everybody is sizing this movie up to expectations that it doesn't need to be sized up to. This movie was a great movie if all you want to do is go in and laugh. If you are looking for some deeper moral and other things that don't belong in a movie like Year One, you should go and see something else.
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Is the vast majority dead wrong?
jalmanzo19 June 2009
Firstly, let me mention that this is my first IMDb post ever and I feel compelled to make this post based on many different things. I went into this movie with no prior knowledge other than a trailer of the movie where michael cera gets berries knocked out of his hands etc. The scene made me laugh and I thought that Jack Black and Cera could be a good pairing for a comedy. I did not know that the movie was directed by Harold Ramis nor that the script was written by Ramis as well as the guys from The Office (all three of whom are comedy geniuses), nor did I know that the movie had been panned by Roger Ebert: the only movie critic whom i actually respect in that we have very similar taste in movies. If I had read the Ebert review (1 star), I probably wouldn't have gone to see the movie but nonetheless I did. There are two kinds of comedy: comedy with a moral to the story and mindless comedy for the sole purpose of making people laugh. This is the latter but it is done to perfection. I'm not going to talk about the movie itself other than to say that the scenes with Oliver Platt and Cera had me laughing as hard as the first half hour of Borat (i.e. I could barely breathe). I'm not claiming that this movie is a classic, in fact I'll admit that there was no real point to the movie and the philosophical bits fell pretty flat but all in all there were many scenes in this movie where Ramis' genius is apparent. I went to the movie to get some laughs and I definitely got my moneys worth. For a quick example of some other comedies which had me leaving a large amount of pee for theatre personnel to mop up later: A Fish Called Wanda,...The Holy Grail, Office Space, Borat, Austin Powers, Happy Gilmore. OK I didn't see most of these in the theatre but you get the point. I can't really say why so many people are panning Year One. My only thought is that they really just don't get the humor. Obviously there is a plentiful supply of people on IMDb that will not like this notion since they couldn't possibly be wrong about anything but in my opinion they are mistaken when it comes to this movie. I have a feeling that people's opinions of this movie will change in time. Is it possible that a pointless cave man comedy could be before its time? I hope this post will get a few more people to watch this movie with an open mind.
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Not nearly as bad as everyone seems to think
bigfella2k15 July 2009
Saw this at a matinée yesterday, with very lowered expectations. Don't quite get all the hate on here for it. If you like Jack Black and Michael Cera, they perform as expected here, loudmouthed braggart and wimpy foil, respectively. Amazing cast...David Cross as Cain and Paul Rudd as Abel? Inspired. Oliver Platt as a hairy-chested high priest? The "McLovin" Kid? There's even a member of Upright Citizens Brigade who puts in a very brief cameo. The story is dumb, and there's a few jokes that fall flat...but the sets are impressive and everyone involved seems to be having fun. A good rental, at least. But you people that are rating it a 1? Save your venom for movies that deserve that, like "Meet The Spartans" (unwatchable) or the latest Michael Bay atrocity.
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Oh come on; this is Mel Brooks inspired.....
intelearts6 September 2009
This is nowhere as bad as some are making out - it has touches of Python and a lot of Mel Brooks - it is pretty lazy in places with too much adlibbing - at least I hope it was adlibbing...

But this is pretty good entertainment - and it's not really about cavemen - it's about the Old Testament set mainly in Sodom - and it is kind of like Life of Brian - though clearly not in the same class.

One can understand why marketers don't want problems with an upset congregation, but at the end of the day this works pretty well as both broad comedy and a gentle satire.

Considering that I was expecting a total donkey with a side order of turkey this was pretty much a fun film - and no where near as bad as I'd heard. Can be watched without loss of brain cells...
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Brilliant Biblical Send-up: Smart and Funny
gerold-firl12 December 2009
Warning: Spoilers
If you hated Life of Brian, then you won't like Year One either. In fact, we see a lot of such creatures rating this movie with one star as a political/religious statement. However, if you like your comedy layered upon multiple levels of meaning, and embedded within a historical and philosophical context, and you're knowledgeable enough to get jokes based upon middle eastern mythology and the slow ascent of enlightenment, you will love this movie.

The film starts with our Main Men, Oh and Zed (Cera and Black) embedded in a basic hunter-gatherer culture. Only problem is, Oh and Zed are modern humans, with our self-awareness and ironic detachment, surrounded by wild-state humans. The natural humans are powerful and fit, but a little lacking in philosophy.

After a close encounter with the Tree of Knowledge, Zed and Oh are exiled by their close-minded band and strike out for the Big City and Modern Times. They soon encounter the Hebrews, and this is where our own closed-minded theatre-goers get their panties in a bunch. We meet Abraham preparing to sacrifice Isaac, Cain slaying Abel, and the ridiculous absurdity of Old Testament "morality". Modern day fundies have a sense of humor chiseled in stone like the Ten Commandments, and this movie breaks them all.

Unfortunately the innocence of the hunter-gatherers has also been lost by this time. They have been captured by civilization and sold into slavery, and now Zed and Oh have a mission: rescue their damsels in distress (Maya and Eema) from slavery in Sodom.

Fortunately Isaac (in a hilarious portrayal of the Jewish Badboy by Chris Mintz-Plasse - that's McLovin to you)guides them to Sin City, where our heroes are quickly introduced into the complexities of modern politics. The power structure of the city is tyrannical and corrupt, ruled by a rotten king, his hilariously corrupt High Priest, and the scheming Prime Minister.

By the end of the film Oh and Zed and Maya and Eema (who are also very funny in supporting roles) have traversed the philosophical arc from instinctive animals through corrupt theocracy and finally end up peering through the keyhole of enlightenment. The humor is a little too smart and sacrilegious for some viewers, but for most it is an excellent comedy. I laughed my ass off and never missed it.
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totally underrated
VishnuDevoBhavA11 December 2018
Man, this is movie is really funny. Great cast and everyone is just great. This is a satire on the Bible and it hits the mark dead center. I just don't understand why this has such a bad rating. Truly deserves a 7+ average.
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Worth a laugh
sprbdgrspc3 July 2009
The film keeps itself from being too thoughtful by focusing on the pop culture knowledge of history and blending it with modern societal norms to create comedic situations. There are plenty of scenes that will give you laughs that pass as abruptly as they come and a few that are longer lasting. From crude sexual humor to semi-intelligent humor this film targets younger audiences that can look at religion in a comedic light. Most of the jokes for this film are at the expense of the Jewish and Christian religion. By no means is this a proper history lesson for anyone and shouldn't be viewed by ages 15 and under without parental permission. That said it is a funny film throughout. If you enjoy buddy films this one will deliver; especially if you are out with friends who enjoy seeing Jack Black's high energy humor and Micheal Cera's awkward teenager humor as they are pretty much in every scene.
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JesseOfner27 June 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I don't know why this movie is being rated so low? This movie is hilarious! Yes there is some humor that is based on the gross factor, but as always, Michael Sera delivers in his dead pan sarcastic humor without missing a beat. Oliver Platte as the high priest is great, and of course Jack Black is great as well. If you come to this thinking that your going to see the greatest movie of all time with the best plot ever written then, your not going to get it, but come on, what would you expect with a movie like this. It's f-ing hilarious and you'll really enjoy getting the opportunity to laugh out loud for 90 minutes then go see this.
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Smart hilarious comedy
TheAtomicPunk11 October 2009
I found this movie on the bottom rack of the corner shelf at blockbuster, which didn't bode well, but I'm glad I took a chance. If you like Arrested Development or Mr Show, you'll like this movie.

The movie is a satire of the old testament. It presents the biblical creation story in the context of a tribe of stone age humans with contemporary mindsets. The results are hilarious, it's not as good as Monty Python's Life of Brian, but it's in the same ballpark.

The only area where the movie suffers is in what seems like an attempt to cater to a younger audience with toilet humor. However, as you cringe watching the toilet humor scenes, you get sideswiped by a few clever jokes that are timed just right.

There are a few jokes in the movie that are delivered so perfectly, with such great nuance and skill, that just thinking about them still makes me laugh. My favorite is the scene where the priest is reading the omens from the sheep entrails he's just poured onto the table, "to me, I see a smiley face, and that makes me happy". ;) This movie is one of the few that I'm willing to buy.
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What I expected.
blueberrylake28 June 2009
Warning: Spoilers
If you like juvenile humor, and find Jack Black funny, then this movie works. Most people won't like it, but if you liked a movie like The Love Guru last year, this will appeal to you. Nothing too clever, but funny.

Basically, Jack Black and Michael Cera play their usual characters, just in loincloths. Jack can't hunt or gather, but he eats from the tree of knowledge, and both are banished into the world. David Cross plays Cain, who is the first person they meet, and actually plays someone closer to his stand up act than Tobias (David and Michael would have worked together on Arrested Development, but David shows that he can actually play another character).

They go from one biblical setting to another, making fun (mainly) of the old testament, and eventually wind up in Sodom, with Cain, and the requisite love interests....

I think where this movie falls down is it seems a bit like a long skit. The chemistry between Jack Black and Michael Cera I thought wasn't great, but the plot/character development was really just secondary to getting in some jokes. Obviously, the jokes won't be to everyones taste (hence the rankings of 0), and will be to others (thus the rankings of 10).

Again, although this may very well win a Razzie this year, I liked it, and if you like stupid humor, this movie has lots of it.
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Judge for yourself.
OwlCritic27 June 2009
I've been looking forward to this movie ever since I saw the trailer for the first time back in February. I didn't go to see it on the opening night, and then, having read all of the bad reviews here on IMDb, I was pretty put off, fearing that this is one of those movies that don't live up to a great trailer.

But I went anyway, and was not disappointed. Maybe I enjoyed it so much because I brought along low expectations, a light mood, and had Haagen Dazs just before the flick.

On the bright side, Year One is riddled with humor, some jokes being funnier than others, and yes, as other reviewers have pointed out, some of the jokes are drawn out. Jack Black is admirably suited for the role of the anti-hero Zed, a sort of Judah Friedlander caveman who fails at everything he does, but fails -so well-. And Michael Cera, the effeminate Oh, is another manifestation of wise casting. Who better to play the virgin gatherer than Cera?

At times, the movie is not -gripping-, and the trailer is a bit misleading, since it gives the impression that the movie would be mostly about cavemen meeting Romans with few biblical allusions. But the entire movie is nearly a parody about the bible, in which another explanation is offered for some of the miracles of the Old Testament.

The moments when the movie is dull are few, and the dialog and characterization make up for it. Zed remains faithful to his inadequate anti-hero character throughout, and Oh keeps getting into worse trouble, as he had since the beginning. This is actually one of the best parts, in which every time Zed gets himself and Oh into trouble, Oh is the one to suffer the worse punishment.

In any case, if you want to enjoy this movie, go with a light heart and just try not to take it too seriously.
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amunetpallaton21 June 2009
My husband and I just got back from watching this movie, and I thought it was hilarious.

I like movies that don't take themselves too seriously, and this is definitely a movie like that. It looked like everyone had fun making a silly film. And I know everyone in the theater was laughing throughout it.

There are parts that try to drag a joke out for a little too long, but overall, I thought the humor was simple, effective, and very well executed.

Michael Cera was definitely the shining star in this movie. He delivers awkward comedy SO well and just so believable and likable. He is a fantastic actor.
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Not worth it
brwindsor16 June 2009
The trailer was funnier than the movie. I was somewhat looking forward to seeing this film, and was greatly disappointed when it turned out to be completely awful. There were some funny moments, but they were swallowed up by the sheer stupidity of the rest. I seriously doubt that fans of Black or Cera will be pleased with this film.

I was lucky enough to see this movie at a free pre-screening. That makes me pretty happy, because I would have been distraught if I had to pay $7.50 to sit through this mess. The plot was very contrived, and the historical humour fizzled out after the first twenty minutes. The rest of the movie relied on a myriad of sexual innuendos that were overused and abused. Overall, the movie became very unenjoyable and although there were a few laughs hidden in there, they could not make up for the rest.
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Very Funny!!!
Pumpkin_Man24 June 2009
Warning: Spoilers
This was an extremely funny movie and had great gags, hilarious references to Biblical history, and much more! Jack Black was incredibly funny as a lazy hunter named Zed, and Michael Cera plays his friend who is a gatherer named Oh. When Zed is caught eating from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, he is banished from the tribe, but Oh decides to join him. They run into Cain and Able, meet Abraham, who is fixing to kill his son Isaac, stop Maya and Eema from becoming slaves, and much more! If you are a hardcore Christian, you may not like this movie, but it's all in good fun! I highly recommend YEAR ONE!!!
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Waste of talent and time
Randy-317 June 2009
A great number of talented people were involved with this film: writer/director Harold Ramis (Ghostbusters, Groundhog Day), co-writers Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg (The Office), lead actors Jack Black and Michael Cera, supporting actors David Cross and Oliver Platt, and cameo actors Paul Rudd, Bill Hader, and Kyle Gass, just to name a few. And it was produced by Judd Apatow. And yet it goes so terribly wrong. How? You have to go to the source: the script, which is aimless, disjointed, and sadly puerile. If you enjoy unfunny penis jokes and find the digestion of human excrement absolutely hilarious, you might enjoy this movie. I found very few laughs here, and I can't believe the amount of talent squandered on this trainwreck.
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A laugh-filled review of ancient history: grass shacks to gilded palaces in 97 minutes
Chris Knipp30 June 2009
Year One is a broad but quick-witted costume comedy by Harold Ramis, who wrote Animal House and directed 'Caddyshack' and 'Groundhog Day'. The American critics aren't happy with it, though if Monty Python had made it, which isn't impossible, they'd be a whole lot more enthusiastic. ('Life of Brian' and 'Apocalypto'were both inspirations.) Ramis succeeds very well in his purpose, which is to entertain and make us laugh. There's a range in the humor from the crude to the subtly satirical. Ramis dips lower than the Brits and doesn't fly as high, but there's some wit and for a few moments the Old Testament gets taken for a bracingly wild ride. The basic joke, well emphasized in the colloquial dialogue, is the contrast between the modern sensibility of the two protags and the ancient settings they roam through.

Ramis gets off to a good start by combining the crude, boisterous Jack Black and the dry, fey Michael Cera as buddies from a stone-age tribe: they make a good contrast, Black's invincible confidence set off against Cera's restraint and exquisite timing. Zed (Black) and Oh( Cera) are outcast members of a hunter-gatherer village: Zed is full of bravado, daring to sample the apple of the tree of knowledge, for all the good it does him (which is none), but still a totally incompetent hunter. Oh is a multi-talented gatherer, the smartest guy in town, though as he says, "that's a low bar." Oh was the one who thought of using gourds to drink out of instead of cupping one's hands ("it just seemed practical"). Oh and Zed, Cera and Black, provide a running series of jokes about masculinity and intelligence throughout. Ramis has fun with Cera's girlish voice and soft face. He's still the smartest guy around -- and also a big guy, towering above squat, plump Jack. Oh's also unmistakably interested in girls, proclaiming himself to be a "male virgin," a status he is aiming to lose. But his looks mean he has to watch out for Zaftig the bald eunuch (Kyle Gass) and the flaming hirsute high priest of Sodom (Oliver Platt).

Dramatically different levels of civilization coexist in Ramis' ancient times, as they do now. 'Year One' is a quick run-through of some early stages of human history. The neolithic pals quickly run into some farmers with domesticated animals, who turn out to be a nastily squabbling Cain and Abel, and some mean Biblical fun begins, leading from fratricide to the discovery of the tiresome old blowhard Abraham. His son Isaac (Christopher Mintz-Plasse of 'Superbad'), whom they save from being sacrificed, emerges as a rebellious pot-smoking teenager who likes to sneak off to Sodom to party (as what teenager wouldn't?). When Zed and Oh hears about this sink of depravity they can't wait to go there themselves, despite Abraham's condemnation. Anyhow they have to escape Abe's clutches before he circumcises them, a new idea they don't particularly fancy.

Things go on in this vein. A lot of the action takes place in Sodom. The Old Testament Hebrews are just a stopover on the way, though they pop up again later. It's a wild ride for Zed and Oh, who go from wearing animal skins to giving oil massages and losing their virginity backstage at a palace revolt. That elaborately staged scene (the budget was $60 million) shows Ramis shot this more like a Biblical blockbuster than a penny-pinching Python flick, and the changing costumes and hair styles are fun. But I'll be honest with you. Jack Black is wearing a bit thin (metaphorically, that is), and it's chiefly Cera, with his casual, throwaway delivery of the best lines, who breathes freshness into this.
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Year One is painfully awful... I'm not kidding, this movie physically hurt!
Smells_Like_Cheese20 June 2009
Jack Black and Michael Cera playing themselves, yeah, where was that even considered funny? Now I absolutely adore these actors, Michael was a great choice in Superbad and Juno and Jack Black has proved he can do great comedy like Tropic Thunder and a good dramatic role like King Kong, even a more calm character like he played in The Holiday. But the main problem? They have no chemistry! You have this wild outgoing maniac who is eating poop(eeeew!) and the calm awkward overly shy nerd who pees on himself(eeew!) and what do you have? Every elementary school joke that could be put into a movie, Year One could have been written by a five year old and proves that top list actors will do anything for those millions that they make.

Jack Black and Michael Cera headline Harold Ramis' Biblical comedy about a pair of misfit hunter-gatherers who embark on a wild journey through the ancient world after being banished from their primitive village. Zed and Oh may lack in the skills that their chieftain is looking for, but they have plans to make it big. Zed has a gut feeling that God has "chosen" him, and so he leads his buddy on a trip through the unknown countryside in search of bigger and better things, bumping into several weird characters along the way -- like a feuding pair of brothers named Cain and Abel. Unfortunately, their quest for greatness hits a few snags, like being sold into slavery, and later becoming the object of interest to a very amorous, very hairy high priest in the opulent city of Sodom.

You have to understand, I wanted to love this movie, from the minute that I saw the trailer, I thought this was going to be such a great movie, but once again they showed all the funny parts in the trailer. During the movie I fell asleep and my boyfriend tried to wake me up and I said "OMG, I was dreaming that I was watching this movie where Jack Black and Michael Cera think that they're funny… oh, no, just let me sleep". Seriously, this movie was beyond painfully bad, I don't understand how anybody could find this kind of humor funny. Year One has everything that should equal a good comedy and that was the funny cast, but thanks to the bad direction and awful concept, Year One falls completely flat. Stay as far away from this trash as you can, this film should be used only to torture possible terrorists into telling the US where they hide their nuclear weapons.

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There's not very many horribly bad moments, but at the same time, there's very few funny moments.
TOMNEL25 June 2009
From the reviews, this movie seemed like it would be horribly bad, and full of annoying cringe worthy moments, but this is not true at all. Actually, despite a lazy script full of nonstop crude and sex jokes, and moments that could be really awful, this movie is above the very low bar. Jack Black and Michael Cera take this bad material and make something mediocre out of it, which still isn't saying much.

Zed (Jack Black) is a gatherer who tries to fit in with the hunter clan, but he's just too silly for their tastes. Oh (Michael Cera) is also a gatherer and is a somewhat unpopular with the ladies. After an accident involving fire, this mismatched pair has to leave and they do through various pieces of biblical history, including meeting Cain (David Cross) and Abel (Paul Rudd), and meeting Isaac (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) and Abraham (Hank Azaria), who apparently had a thing for cutting foreskin. The movie is a hodge podge of scenes thrown together with very little plot, but by the end Zed and Oh have to save the lives of two girls from their village.

Jack Black and Michael Cera are pretty good here. Jack Black does his typical over the top stoner performance and Michael Cera gives the emotional boy performance. Even David Cross and Oliver Platt manage to squeeze some laughs out of their performances. But nobody really has a lot of material to work with, though at the same time the material isn't the worst out there. It's bad, and oftentimes relies on some outwardly sexual material. In fact, this is the least subtle PG-13 rated film I've seen where sexual or crude jokes are involved. This includes scenes of eating poop and throwing testicles. If something sexual happens, it's not only just implied, but it's flaunted.

One big problem is the lack of plot in the movie. It grows boring going from setpiece to setpiece, never establishing a real plot until the end, and despite being only around 100 minutes, it still feels way too long. The climax is ridiculous and quite boring, and this movie is too filled with scenes that aren't particularly horrible, but they aren't particularly funny, and all too often this movie is just a laugh free staring at the screen. It managed to attain quite consistent mediocrity, with some chuckles every once in a while. It wasn't horrible, it just wasn't good either, by any means.

My rating: ** out of ****. 105 mins. PG-13 for crude sexual humor, drug use, and language.
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Not Very Funny
maximroy19 June 2009
As a fan of most of Jack Black's work so far (at least the non Tenacious D stuff that is in comedy) and a fan of Michael Cera's great straight man work on Arrested Development and Superbad, I was very disappointed in this film. It is a great premise for a movie but it fails to deliver many laughs, it is basically one of those "all the funny parts are in the trailer" movies and was I think a really wasted opportunity for what could have been a very funny film. Jack Black is okay doing his usual act and Michael Cera is very good in his typical straight man role but the laughs don't exactly come flowing through. There are a couple of very good cameo appearances in the movie, I don't want to spoil the surprise, and they help to make up for the overall poor quality of the rest of the film. Worth seeing probably but definitely not at the movies for $12.
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Bloody Brilliant!
zolldoll30 June 2009
I love this film! Why doesn't anybody on this site like it? All my friends loved it! after leaving the cinema i said "I love this movie, when I am on my deathbed I will be saying I love this film!"

What do you people expect? Michael Cera is Gorgeous! he is cute and sweet, yet everybody complains he plays the same character, DUH! that is why he is cast! Jeez we all know he is no Zac Effron, he can't play the cool kid in school, his voice is too high! Seriously it would be unbelievable and instead of the "he is the same character" comments everyone would say "doesn't suit his role". He is a cute and dorky inbetweener that we have all come to love, why do you expect any different?

Jack Black was hilarious and i thought his character was great! He was sexist and funny. His character was kind of Shallow Hal-like but Neanderthal which was great!

This movie was hilarious I found myself laughing so loudly in the cinema! I will definitely buy it when it comes out on DVD, I Loved it!
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Jack black is... the same character he ALWAYS plays.
Animus20 June 2009
Warning: Spoilers
OK first things first, I did not go see this voluntarily, I took my girlfriend to see it when we arrived at the theater too late to catch the last showing of "The Proposal". As expected Jack turned is his normal "I can't act, I can just do this one personality" performance. As expected his character is crude, idiotic and believes himself to be a genius Casanova (I dare you to name any character he has played that this does not describe). Micheal Cera whom I am told is an actual actor left me unconvinced. Neither "character" managed to be likable or show any character growth throughout the story, not one inch of growth or shred of wisdom. I suppose its too much to ask when both characters have names that mean "zero". As with most Jack Black films it claims to be comedy but the jokes are old enough to draw social security benefits and the sight gags won't appeal to anyone over the age of 13 or so. To me the funniest moment of the film is when Zed is getting the snot beaten out of him. If you like repetitive jokes and toilet humor, look no further, if you want anything resembling real entertainment, look elsewhere.
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If you're looking for Superbad, don't look here.
cheer_chick9019 June 2009
This movie was not quite terrible, but not really funny either. The first half of the movie was not funny, and when it finally did get funny the movie was almost over.

Jack Black is sometimes painful to watch, but Michael Cera makes it bearable. The other characters are minor, and do not in anyway, help move the plot or laughs along.

All of the funny parts are in the trailer for the movie. So, if you're looking for something as funny as Superbad, Knocked Up, The Hangover etc., do not waste your money seeing this in the movie theatre; just rent it when it comes out.
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Yeah, it's as bad as people say.
C-Younkin18 June 2009
"Bruno" is coming in 3 weeks, "Bruno" is coming in 3 weeks. That's a little chant you can soothe your head with if you so happen to go through the misfortune of watching "Year One." About as detestable a movie as anyone could imagine, one wonders why Sony decided to screen it for critics to begin with and wonders even more why they couldn't at least show us something afterwards to erase it completely from our memories. It's bad. It's really, really, really bad. It's unimaginable that a worse movie could possibly come out this year. Harold Ramis, the man who directed "Caddyshack" and "Groundhog Day" for crying out loud; what has happened to you? What did the movie audience do to you to deserve this movie? The only funny thing about it is that a competent person directed it, that people who have been funny before starred in it, and yes, even funny people wrote it.

The story centers around tribal nitwits Zed (Jack Black) and Oh (Michael Cera), two guys living in the year one who can neither hunt nor gather and so are thrown out of their community of Neanderthals and dung n' stick huts. No matter. For the two have eaten of the forbidden fruit and are now curious about what lay outside of their limited little world, and so they embark on a journey through the ancient world. On their travels they meet Cain (David Cross) and Abel (Paul Rudd), Abraham (Hank Azaria) and Isaac (Christopher-Mintz Plasse), and they wind up in Sodom where their girlfriends (Juno Temple and June Diane Raphael) have been turned into slaves and are about to be sacrificed by the high priest (Oliver Platt). None of this really matters, as it's all just set- up for a lot of bits that are flawlessly unfunny.

It's safe to say that Ramis has gone from rusty (his previous directorial effort was 2005's "The Ice Harvest") to downright awful. He, along with co-screenwriters Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg (two guys who are part of the creative think tank on "The Office"), craft a complete train-wreck of a film that falls back on everything that's wrong with American comedy. It settles for lowest common denominator and aims lower. Poop is eaten, a character hanging upside-down pees and lets it trickle down his face, testicles are thrown, genital mutilation is referenced, and fart and vomit jokes are painfully added to this crude and all together embarrassingly sloppy and unfunny stew of crap. And this is the A-material. The movie also tries to riff on the bible as much as possible, hitting on everything from forbidden fruit to slaves to temples of death. It's all just a lot of rambling with no punchlines. Ramis and co. are going for a little bit of Mel Brooks, a little bit of Seinfeld, and a little Monty Python, just they fail miserably at all three. The only thing that comes close to funny and worth referencing is a looney slapstick fight between Cain and Abel that later keeps getting hammered to death through repetition.

And Jack Black is just insufferable in this kind of scenario. His brand of comedy is the hyperactive, off-the-rails, take everything to about a level 10 type that's worked well for him in movies like "School of Rock" and "Tropic Thunder", but with sub par material he is in fact a far below-irritating comic actor who just grates on you in every scene. And Michael Cera is doing his regular dorky hangdog shtick here and that's another problem with the movie in general. These two spend time mugging and doing their own improv, basically being themselves rather than the characters. They're both too modern to actually be believable in these roles. And most of the woman characters are too modern too. One mentions she's a lesbian. Another mentions that God may be a woman. Both seem to center on feministic principles that in year one might get a woman into a lot of trouble. Lastly, as if this movie doesn't try hard enough to work gross, we have to watch a hairy, effeminate Oliver Platt get oil rubbed on him in yet another scene that screams for laughs but only gets more groans. Please for the love of God, no "Year Two."

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