I haven’t seen Get Hard (Warner Bros., 3.27), the preparing-for-prison comedy starring Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart. Chances are I’ll find it over-the-top coarse and unfunny, but Drew McWeeny’s politically correct slapdown review, filed tonight from Austin, makes me want to bend over backwards to find something I can enjoy or praise about it. Remember how Mel Brooks has said over and over that Blazing Saddles could never be made today? Please share impressions of Drew’s Get Hard disapproval, and in so doing consider the possibility that a straight guy being fearful of being forced to be some bossman’s heifer for ten years in the joint is not necessarily the same thing as being homophobic.
“There is nothing [Get Hard] can imagine that is worse than gay sex,” McWeeny laments. “How in the year 2015, as we see over 30 states finally recognizing same-sex marriage, can we possibly justify this thing? How can anyone sit in the theater and just laugh and laugh and laugh as the movie repeatedly screams, ‘Oh my god, gay people are so gross!’
“This film is so relentless in how wrong it is that I eventually gave up. I just couldn’t bring myself to laugh at something that will reinforce hatred, that plays into this idea that gay sex is somehow inherently more disgusting than regular sex. When we talk about homophobia, that’s exactly what this is. Sorry, but as great as sex feels and as important as it is to every person’s happiness, stigmatizing anyone for enjoying themselves in a safe, consensual way seems morally offensive to me.
“Competently made but morally repellent, Get Hard may be my least favorite Will Ferrell feature film. It doesn’t really matter, of course, since Will works so often, but it does feel strange to simply intensely dislike something where he has such a prominent role. I have no doubt Warner Bros. will make a lot of money with it, but considering what kind of audience would embrace a film that so blatantly dislikes gay people, they should not feel good about it.”