Don’t swim or run to theaters for immature ‘Baywatch’ film

| May 26, 2017

Remakes have become all the rage in Hollywood these days. It seems a lack of originality and creativity is something to strive for. From the live action “Beauty and the Beast”, to the upcoming “It”, and now the TV show-turned-movie “Baywatch”, it’s becoming hard to find a new cinematic idea amongst the sea of sequels and remakes. Sure, remakes can be great for the younger generation that don’t remember the original, but what about us old folks who not only remember the original but don’t want to see its legacy tarnished by an over-budgeted copy? For me, the track record for remakes has been pretty dismal, so I didn’t really have high hopes going into watching the new “Baywatch” revamp. The original Baywatch TV show was definitely not in my regular rotation of TV entertainment growing up, but it was a huge hit in the 90s. I mean, David Hasselhoff and Pamela Anderson are basically synonymous with red bathing suits and running in slow motion on the beach. How are they going to take a TV show that was on the air for 11 seasons and birthed numerous spinoffs and TV movies and find a way to create a new spin on it? I’ll admit that the early trailers were pretty funny and I am a heterosexual female so the idea of watching Zac Efron and Dwayne Johnson run around in bathing suits the entire movie was not exactly going to deter me from watching the movie, so I figured if I go into it knowing that it won’t be an Oscar-worthy film, then I can’t be disappointed right? Wrong. baywatch

In this new take on Baywatch, newcomer and disgraced Olympic swimmer Matt Brody (Efron) is forced to perform community service with the famous Baywatch crew, headed up by Mitch Buchanan (Dwayne Johnson). The only problem is that Brody comes with a huge ego and problem with authority, so when Buchanan tries to teach Brody that this new position comes with strict rules and regulations, Brody immediately rebels. Joining the veteran lifeguards CJ Parker (Kelly Rohrbach) and Stephanie Holden, a few other new recruits are primed to join the squad for the new beach season including the beautiful Summer Quinn (Alexandra Daddario) and lovable goof Ronnie Greenbaum, so Buchanan cannot have a loose cannon on his team. Brody either needs to shape up or ship out. And not only does he have to worry about his new crew, but apparently a large drug operation is somehow using the Baywatch beach as a way to bring drugs into the bay. Of course, instead of trusting the police to do their jobs, the team decides that it is up to them to somehow crack down on this drug trafficking problem themselves before it destroys the town.

Like I said before, the early trailers had a lot of funny moments in them that allowed me to feel like maybe this movie could surpass my expectations. However, this film suffered the fatal flaw of including all the funny points in the trailer, and leaving a jumbled mess of cheesy dialogue in its wake. I’m not naive in knowing that this movie is basically 2 hours of watching extremely attractive people run around in bathing suits, so the sexual jokes were sure to be plenty, but it seemed as if the jokes were geared towards 13-year-old boys. In fact it was hard to figure out who this movie was actually made to be geared towards, considering it is rated R and technically shouldn’t be trying to appeal to immature teenagers. The extreme overuse of male genitalia jokes were clearly only included for shock value and had no merit in the story at all. There is a delicate line between a smart joke and a dumb joke, and this movie was full of easy, immature punchlines. The script and dialogue were terrible, so it is not exactly the cast’s fault that they did not appear to have a good cohesive camaraderie. It is one of those unfortunate examples of when each member gives a decent performance on their own, but when you put all those performances together to try and create a movie, it becomes an incompatible mess. Sure Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron are funny actors in their own right, but together the spark just wasn’t there. Their stereotyped characters were too over the top that it almost became distracting. The lack of cast chemistry combined with the excessive amount of immature sexual jokes and easy one-liners created a tortuous viewing experience for anyone over the age of 13 who has seen more than few decent movies in their lifetime. For fans of the TV show, this remake will surely be a huge disappointment and unfortunately it might actually just be a huge disappointment for everyone in general.

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