Very Naughty Christmas: Reviews of “Friday After Next”, “A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas” and “Rare Exports”

Brought the children to bed, now ready for some R-rated fun? Here you go with some more crude humor and weird comedies.

Friday After Next
(USA 2002, director: Marcus Raboy)

fridayafternext

After being robbed by a thief in a Santa costume, two boys from the hood decide it’s time for payback…and get some money to pay the rent with a security guys job at a mall.

Christmas in the Hood? Who’d have thought this actually works as a comedy. Not high-class comedy by any means, but Ice Cube who wrote the script (also for the original and sequel) does a good job of ridiculing certain stereotypes. Having a burglar dressed up like Santa being beaten up and chased through the Hood is definitely worth the admission alone.

The rest of the movie isn’t that Christmas-y, but there are always funny scenes which work because of the dialogue. Only with the appearance of a pimp, things get a bit too silly and annoying. But all in all it’s light entertainment even for people who aren’t into rap music.

Rating: 7/10

Buy the DVD on
Amazon Germany
Amazon UK
Amazon USA

imdb

A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas
(USA 2011, director: Todd Strauss-Schulson)

haroldkumarchristmas

After accidentally burning down the tree of his stepfather, an odyssey before Christmas has to be taken by two guys in which not only the Spirit but also some drugs are involved.

This is just for the 2D version as I didn’t have a chance to watch the other one. But as I heard, it should be quite good (and better than Avatar the movie also makes fun of in one scene), and there are a lot of eye-popping sequences in it, it seems.

I only watched the first movie, and it wasn’t really my kind of humor. Maybe it had to do with pot smoking or the general way the characters behaved (they weren’t that funny in the first American Pie flick to get their own franchise, I always thought), so of course I was sceptical about this one.

It’s a bit difficult to get all the references and understand some scenes, as there seems to be a small “mythology”, a roster of characters people have to know. But even with that problem aside, there’s not much of a story or plot development. It doesn’t need to have those, either, as it’s one of those movies one just watches without using one’s brain.

Some scenes are hilarious, and the Christmas topic has been well implemented, other scenes aren’t that funny, and of course the whole relationship between the characters is pretty flat. But what the movie lacks in that department, it has lots of memorable scenes in the ideas. When the credits are shown, one can’t remember what was actually going on, but there are surely some parts which will stick.

Not the best Xmas movie ever, as some people say, but definitely worth watching, also for people who didn’t like the other Harold & Kumar flicks. Maybe I’ll give them another chance, as it’s interesting to see how different the characters are in this one.

Rating: 7/10

Buy the 3D BD on
Amazon Germany
Amazon UK
Amazon USA
Buy the DVD on
Amazon Germany
Amazon UK
Amazon USA

imdb

Rare Exports
(Finland/Norway/France/Sweden 2010, director: Jalmari Helander)

rareexports

Something strange is going on in Finland as cattle are slaughtered and children abducted. Could it be the real Santa, the scary one, not the Coca-Cola-fabricated one?

A mystery horror thriller about Santa? Not to be compared to Saint, this has quite a different atmosphere, and that’s the main attraction at first. But what it offers in suspense, it lacks in interesting characters. Actually they are so unlikeable that it’s hard to feel anything for them, no matter what happens.

Despite the suspense, there aren’t many moments in the movie which stand out. Except for the ending. Then it gets really crazy and saves it from mediocrity. Without the main concept and some nice ideas, it would most probably be another attempt to fuse indie cinema with mainstream horror. Granted, there’s something unique about the atmosphere, but why it takes so long until finally something happens and the unlikeable characters are mostly forgotten, is the biggest issue.

Rating: 6/10

Buy the BD on
Amazon Germany
Amazon UK
Amazon USA
Buy the DVD on
Amazon Germany
Amazon UK
Amazon USA

imdb

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About nufafitc

Being an avid gamer, cinemaniac, and bookworm in addition to other things the internet and new media present, I'm also very much into DIY music, rock and pop in particular. Writing short or longer pieces about anything that interests me has always made me happy. As both an editor for German website "Adventure-Treff" and UK website "Future Sack", I like to write reviews and news about recent developments in the movies, games and book industry.
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