Cinematic Releases: Snatched (2017) - Reviewed

Mismatched duos are a staple of comedy filmmaking since it’s inception. The comedic potential of watching two very different personalities clash is the gift that keeps on giving. Whether it’s a vacation or road trip gone horribly wrong, we like to go to the theater and see these types of stories done right. It is an age-old formula that can leave audiences laughing all the way home. Given the talent involved with this film, I had hopes for a fun buddy comedy that serves as counter programming from the big blockbusters that dominate the summer movie season. Unfortunately, Snatched isn’t that film. 

Dumped by her douchebag rocker boyfriend on the eve of their expensive vacation, thirty-something Emily Middleton (Amy Schumer) is stuck with a non-refundable ticket. With no one left to turn to, Emily persuades her cautious homebody mother, Linda (Goldie Hawn), to accompany her on an exotic getaway to South America. After trouble strikes, these polar opposites are forced to work through their differences to escape from a wildly outrageous and dangerous jungle adventure. 

Snatched is a film that could have been so much more. Having two agreeable and funny leads like Amy Schumer and Goldie Hawn should give the film a comedic jolt and make for an enjoyable film. Schumer and Hawn have a fun dynamic that is tragically underused, as is the rest of the cast. The best scenes in the film are the moments where the two characters get to play off of each other and don’t have to serve the plot. Schumer and Hawn play well off of each other. In a better movie, these two could make a dynamic and fun pairing. In this movie, they are occasionally fun but mostly wander around aimlessly from scene to scene.It feels like we are watching these characters going through the motions in the most low-key way possible. 

Director Jonathan Levinehas made a film that is disappointingly and aggressively mediocre for the most part with little glimpses of living up to the comedic potentials that it’s paring teases. This is especially a shame considering both Hawn’s long absence from film and director Levine’s previous films. Both were apart of some solid and enjoyable films that had both humor and heart in spades that is missing from this film. This feels like a film made on autopilot. 

Ahhh, he says the movie is mediocre!!!

Despite its talented cast and crew, Snatched is a hit or miss comedy with the pacing of a latter-day Happy Madison film and jokes that could have been so much better. The script for this film feels like a first draft that was rushed into production. For every funny moment in this film, there are three or four more that land with a violent thud and would leave me wincing. Snatched is not worth seeing in a theater, as I am sure you will leave mostly unsatisfied like I did. It is the kind of film I could see someone enjoying on an airplane or on a nice Sunday afternoon on cable. 

Snatch this review.

-Liam S. O'Connor