This is the first draft of my review for Hall Pass for the Innis Herald, a college publication that I write for and that, to my knowledge, doesn’t have a frequently updated web version yet. But you know, those kids have essays to write. Here goes…
Think of this movie as “The Ice Storm” but with explicit and projectile poop.
Due to a few loosely stringed factors – their husbands Rick (Owen Wilson) and Fred (Jason Sudeikis) constantly checking out other younger women while going on a night out with them, accidentally listening to said husbands talk about how much money they’ll pay to be with another woman, the advice of an older but energized neighbor Dr. Lucy (Joy Behar), embarrassing themselves in front of the other neighbors by talking about the said neighbors lady regions – Maggie (Jenna Fischer) and Grace (Christina Applegate) spitefully give their respective husbands the titular “Hall Pass.” The two Rhode Island wives leave for a week and let the men be boys again.
It’s strange how I have to talk about the women – subject – giving Rick and Fred – predicate – the said hall passes, since the subjects of more than half of the film are the men and their Berlusconi-esque pursuit for preferably young, just-turned-21 vaginas. We see the men doing it all wrong, in their forties having to go to the wrongest of places to pick up girls. Day 1 or Day 2, introduced through title cars with the “Law and Order” chimes, is spent chowing down banquets in Applebees, the married men stuck in domesticated suburbs instead of going to clubs or wherever where all the nubile women are supposed to be.
Forty percent, at the most, also show Maggie and Grace enjoying, by default, the sabbatical from their husbands. In Cape Cod with their parents, they watch a baseball game where Maggie catches the eye of the older but dreamy coach and Grace, being the prettier one, gets the attention of the hunky young star player (Tyler Hoechlin, the little boy from “Road to Perdition” all grown up). While the men are failing in their quests and having second thoughts about their temporary freedom, Maggie and Grace have the same anxieties even if the chances are knocking at them unsolicited. The guy who introduced their film tells writer-director Bobby Farrelly, who was present during the screening, that this is his first ‘chick flick.’
During the preview screening, there was this woman laughing so hard during a full frontal male nude scene, which made me pray for her unfortunate life. I ended my review by saying that the film’s ending makes me jealous of Stephen Merchant. 3/5.