Directors Peter and Bobby Farrelly were once the kings of comedy. Before the turn of the millennium, the brothers reached the pinnacle of stardom with classic comedic hits like Dumb and Dumber and There's Something About Mary. But as gravity has taught us, what goes up, must come down. The past decade was very unkind to the Farrelly brothers. With the local pair (originally from Phoenixville, PA) directing lackluster features like Shallow Hal, Stuck on You, and The Heartbreak Kid, many critics questioned if they'd ever return to their early heights. However, with their newest release, Hall Pass, Peter and Bobby truly believe they're on their way back.
Rick (played by Wilson) and Fred (played by Sudeikis) are two married men still fascinated by the natural beauty of a woman's body. When Rick's wife Maggie (played by The Office's Jenna Fischer) can no longer handle her husband's blatant gawking, she offers him a "hall pass". A "hall pass" is a week off from marriage, hopefully allowing Rick to see that the grass isn't always greener. A jealous Fred ends up successfully landing himself a "hall pass" too from his wife Grace (played by Christina Applegate). So when the wives pack up and head out to visit relatives for a week, the short-term pair of bachelors shack up at a nearby hotel and see if they still have what it takes to make it in the singles scene.
Hall Pass is a smooth running comedy that contains its fair share of hysterical, laugh of loud moments. Raunchy, crude humor isn't for everyone, so it's best to expect to see some here. And not just some, expect to see a lot. The Farrelly brothers attempt to keep the audience's attention with a constant succession of unbelievable on screen moments. Some of which will have you laughing until your stomach hurts, and others that will make you cringe in discomfort.
There are so many ups and downs in this film that it's hard to put into perspective. The plot is sketchy, and Hall Pass certainly contains a few storylines that offer absolutely nothing to the experience. In fact, despite the decent collection of outrageously funny scenes, the movie is very flat. You can sense a large parallel between the film's two main characters and the pair of sibling directors. It seems as though the Farrelly brothers are still stuck amidst a midlife crisis of their own. What seemed like a natural comedic energy in their early work, has turned into a massively forced-funny experience of late. And although Hall Pass is slightly better then their other somewhat recent titles, it is still far from the epic classics that once ruled the genre. If you're looking for some filthy and unfiltered laughs, then Hall Pass will be right up your alley. But if you're expecting a groundbreaking comedy, you won't find it here.