Director Steven Brill’s last film was my least favorite movie of 2013 (Movie 43), so expectations were not exactly sky high for Walk of Shame. At first glance, the comedy starring Elizabeth Banks appears to be a mix between The Hangover and Anchorman. Unfortunately, it lacks the jokes or the charm that the former two films had.
After having her boyfriend leave and thinking she lost a once-in-a-lifetime job opportunity as an anchor in a major station, Meghan reacts as any young adult would, by getting sloppy drunk and engaging in a one night stand. After a successful night, she wakes to find out that she’s now the top candidate for the anchor job, she just needs to get to work on time.
Forgetting her wallet and phone, Meghan proceeds to embark on the longest walk of shame ever.. On the way, she makes unlikely friends and goes through zany adventures to make it to the newsroom in time for evening news. That was the intention. Instead, Walk of Shame is a misogynistic, racist, unfunny escapade that fails to bring anything new to the comedy genre.
The issue with the film is that the derivation of humor stems from how different Meghan is from everyone else. Early on, Meghan encounters three black men, and sure enough she’s scared that they’re drug dealers evading the cops. Not only is her character racist, Brill’s perspective encourages the audience to be racist. It turns out that these guys, Scrilla, Pookie, and Hulk, are nice gentlemen that’s willing to help Meghan. This is suppose to be funny. The contrast from the expectation of how these gangbangers would act towards an attractive white woman and how the it plays out in the movie is suppose to be hilarious. These presumptions just come off senselessly offensive.
It’s not an isolated incident either. Meghan encounters an angry foreign taxi driver, a bunch of incompetent cops, and most damaging, the film paints Elizabeth Banks’ character as a bumbling idiot. Foreigners can’t be trusted, minorities are stereotypes and women are useless, Walk of Shame is an embarrassing concept built on damaging assumptions.
Poor writing, unoriginal jokes and predictable characters are just icing on the cake for this crude attempt at humor. Steven Brill will have the audience leaving the theaters in a walk of shame with this one.
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