A NIGHT AT THE ROXBURY
Why is this? Its because the whole point of these guys is that
they have no lives. They have no personalities, they have almost never had
any lines except the occasional Whats up? Wanna dance?
spoken to an attractive but disgusted female who subsequently gets bounced
off the set by their overexcited dancing style. Trying to infuse these characters
with a story is killing the whole joke. What works in the three-minute scene
is that we dont know who they are or why they got there. But in this
film, written by Ferrell and Steve Koren, their lame story is explained
in painfully shallow terms.
The guys are two brothers, Steve and Doug Butabi, whose father (Dan Hedaya)
runs a silk flower shop in New York City. The boys work there part time,
but just like John Travoltas character in Saturday Night Fever,
they only work to make money for club hopping. Unlike Travoltas character,
however, they never get into the clubs they want. They usually stand in
line outside, trying to look cool in their shiny silk shirts, rubbing their
noses and hitting on women. Finally, Doug (Kattan), the smart one,
gets an idea: If they cant get into the Roxbury, they will open a
club of their own.
This is all well and good, but their father has other plans. He wants
Steve (Ferrell), the looker, to marry the girl-next-door, Emily
(fellow SNL-er Molly Shannon), whose father (Dwayne Hickman) owns
a lamp shop. Then the two stores can be combined and Steve and Emily can
be co-owners of the first lamp-and-flower boutique in history. Emily, who
claims to have a crush on Steve, is all for this idea, but Steve is not
Finally, through an accident, they do get into the Roxbury and are therefore
mistaken by everyone as important. For a short period they enjoy the sweet
life of celebrity, and try to implement their plan to get a new club started.
But they are soon discovered to be the losers that they are, and are back
on the street in no time.
Despite the fact that Ferrell and Kattan are two of the funniest, most energetic people on SNL right now, this film's story is pointless and most attempts at humor fall flat. Directors John Fortenberry and Peter Markle do nothing to help the situation, presumably because they feel Ferrell and Kattan know what they're doing, trying to breathe life into characters that have none. But these guys are meant to be monosyllabic, two-dimensional cutouts. Forcing them to live longer than five minutes is too painful to watch. *½
See Current Reviews
See FilmQuips Archive