"Nature Calls" But Doesn't Really Have Anything to Say Review

A scouting-themed comedy starring Patton Oswalt and Johnny Knoxville, Nature Calls is about a failing scoutmaster looking to honor his dad and former scoutmaster's legacy by having one last big scouting trip. David Gordon Green produced Nature Calls, and it's not unlike his previous producing/directing efforts in that there are adults cursing at children. Historically, this is comedy I like, but typically only if the cursing is done by Danny McBride. Adults and kids involved in bad behavior is always a plus, but everything feels stilted here. However, the kids are quite good, especially Regan Mizrahi as Kent, who revels in hitting on Maura Tierney's character.

Yup, Maura Tierney is in this, too, and while she's actually quite good, to be fair, there's not much for her to do here. More often than not, in a Green-produced show or film, the female characters are often as ugly and nasty as the male leads. Tierney, however; never hits quite the depths Riggle or Knoxville do. In the end, it's a pretty thankless role.

Nature Calls stars, among others, Patrice O'Neal, and last I checked, he died 2 years ago; but even in death, he's funnier than a majority of comics alive today, including his co-star Rob Riggle. There I said it, and I have no regrets. Riggle has seemingly cornered the market on playing the screaming, angry, golf-playing jerk, and I say "golf-playing" only because I don't think I've ever seen a film where he's not rocking a polo shirt and looking like a dunce. Although, apparently the man is a Marine, so, maybe I should watch what I say.

The movie, overall, is relatively unfunny. It's a shame because the cast is interesting and the setup is pretty solid. Overall, I was surprised how completely terrible this movie was with so many talented performers. What a wasted opportunity.

Blu-ray Bonus Features

Extras include a behind the scenes featurette, AXS TV: A Look At Nature Calls, outtakes, and a theatrical trailer.

"Nature Calls" is on sale January 22, 2013 and is rated R. Written and directed by Todd Rohal. Starring Johnny Knoxville, Patton Oswalt.

Mar
02
2013
Robert Ottone • Staff Writer

Robert Ottone is a freelance journalist living and working on Long Island. He writes for a variety of publications and websites covering business, politics, lifestyle and film. Check out his blog here.


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