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Cinemavenger

   The funniest, nastiest movie reviews anywhere.


American Ultra


Never sell old Star Wars action figures on Craigslist.  Just when you think you're going to make a few tax-free bucks, some weirdo tries to kidnap your house or rob your dog.  Or worse, if you're a bastion of righteous movie mayhem, you could find yourself hoodwinked by Michael Bay and George Lucas.  (I should've known Lucas didn't need my 12-inch Boba Fett to complete his collection.) 


Those humorless fucks apparently don't care much for ol' Cinemavenger's fun-pokin', so they were fixin' to do a little Deliverance-style revenge pokin' of their own.  But for the grace of some mad MacGyver skills, a stick of gum, some pocket lint and a thumbtack my asshole would be wider than the Holland Tunnel right now. 


And that's how I spent my summer vacation.


You know who else seemed like a boring, regular nobody but turned out to be a super-spy/badass assassin?  Well, there was Gina Davis in The Long Kiss Goodnight, Ahnuld in Total Recall, Damon in the Bourne movies, Colin Farrell in the remake of Total Recall, and now Jesse "'s Girl" Eisenberg in American Ultra.  Everyone else on the list may be cooler froods than Eisenberg's Mike Howell, but he's the only one who stabs and shoots with Doritos-dusted fingers.


You see, Mike and his loving girlfriend, Phoebe (Kristen "Patrick" Stewart), are slacker stoners living on the bottom rung of the ladder in West Virginia.  Mike clerks at a below-low-end convenience store and is an all around fuckup.  Phoebe rocks both flannels and the ganj and stays with the seemingly worthless Mike for some reason not even he can understand. 


Then, one day, in a bit of fantasy wish-fulfillment that makes a wet dream about your favorite supermodel seem hopelessly tame by comparison, Mike is "activated."  No, he's not a yeast culture.  He's a highly trained killing machine, the product of a defunct CIA program.  You know, instead of being the loser he most certainly appears to be. 


Call him 00420.


Much allegedly hilarious carnage ensues as the blazed and confused Mike and Phoebe try to figure out why everyone's out to kill them.  In the fringes, we get John "Drug Dealer Roles Are So Stereotypical" Leguizamo playing a stereotypical drug dealer.  Walton "Good Night John-Boy" Goggins as a semi-retarded, maniacal murderer.  Topher "Less Than Amazing" Grace whining and shouting (sometimes simultaneously) as the least believable CIA section chief ever.  And, in the biggest surprise of the movie by a wide fucking margin, Stewart giving a performance in which she only looks annoyedly constipated once or twice.


American Ultra wants to be Cheech and Chong: Guns and Bongs, but it pulls its punches (get it?) with the violence and spaces out (hey, hey!) on the wacky tobaccy laughs.  It's more American Ultra-Light.