Smiley Face Reviews
Dealer: "You're going to have to pay me"
Anna Faris: Oh my GOD! Are you going to kill me?!
Dealer: "No Im a pot dealer, Ill probably take your couch or something"
Director: Gregg Araki
Summary: Talk about living the high life: Hilarity ensues as a young actress named Jane (Anna Faris) attempts to get around town after accidentally consuming a batch of marijuana-laced treats belonging to her wacko roommate. Stoned out of her mind, she must pay her gas bill, accompany a chum to the dentist and make it to an audition before the day is done.
My Thoughts: "Wow.. What a stinker. Being that high is totally believable cause I've seen it (for those of you who say it's not realistic). The thing about stoner flicks is you automatically think or believe they will be funny. I'm not saying there wasn't a few funny moments, but that's all there were was, moments. Not good enough for me. Anna Faris is a funny girl, she's proved that in roles like the "Scary Movie" films, and my favorite, "Hot Chick". But this just seemed over the top with over acting in her part. I couldn't wait for it to end."
Her character, Jane, stumbles from one paranoid freak-out to another as she tries to accomplish several goals in one day. Many of the resulting situations are sorta funny, and she sees some pretty pretty paranoid hallucinations as well. If you're a fan of stoner comedies or of Anna Faris, try out Smiley Face. Just don't expect more than a laugh or two.
A film worth seeing if you like Anna Faris, and just want to watch something that isn't in the least bit heavy. This film delivers some good, cheap laughs that you know you're in for from the onset.
Once again, I try to only review funny movies, and this is a very funny movie, for stoners at least.
I'm glad stoner movies are moving into this direction of more realistic portrayals of marijuana use. The camera techniques implemented here surpass the efforts of even classics like the Cheech and Chong series, and certainly beats the crap out of comedy missteps like Half Baked or How High.
So if you like those two aforementioned crapfests, you may not like this superior stoner wit.
[font=Century Gothic]At Point A, she is already stoned at 9:16 am, with an audition in two hours, an electric bill that needs to be paid...oh hey, look at those cupcakes her psychotic-looking roommate, Steve(Danny Masterson), made for his science fiction fan group! But they are actually pot cupcakes and that only makes a bad situation worse. Plus, now she has to get to Venice by 3:00 pm to pay her drug dealer, Steve(Adam Brody), or he is going to do something drastic like take her furniture in payment...[/font]
[font=Century Gothic]Directed by Gregg Araki, "Smiley Face" is a cautionary tale about graduating college with an economics degree.(No, that didn't sound right.) It is an unhinged and funny stoner comedy, but nothing deeper than that. Well, I could bring up that it did remind me a little of "Under the Volcano" but that sounds utterly pretentious...in any case, I'm sure Jane could put it much better than I could.(You know, for somebody with the energy level and brain activity of an elderly snail, she does get around a lot for one day.)[/font]
Well, I'll be damned. It turns out this experiment is worthy of all the talent behind it. Either way... non-smokers better steer past, because this delirious, almost surreal romp through California might very well just be a treat to those who do know what it feels like to have to deal with a hundred things at once while you're stoned out of your mind. Things get predictably very, very messy, and the narrative sometimes feels too fabricated, but the woozy visuals and dreamlike soundtrack coat with impeccable flair what might just have been another stoner comedy with just one chick in the lead.
That, and the bizarre recurring topic of socialism played almost subliminally up until it the film's climax... that would already be enough to make it a decent effort in its genre. But like almost all the projects Anna Faris is affiliated with, Smiley Face hugely benefits from the pitch-perfect performance the actress delivers. I'm happy to report that she knocks it out of the park again here, offering strange, hilarious and oh-so-true variations on an altered state like no other lead in a stoner film I've seen before. Her third-act monologue(s), backed by a saucy script gimmick, is as funny as anything I've seen on film in a whole year. Add to that plenty of other comic talents like Jane Lynch, Danny Masterson and John Krasinski offering equally memorable appearances... and you just know you've got the stuff of a cult classic in your hands.
Consequently, this pairing of a shockingly sensitive and surely impressionistic director with a brilliant funnywoman is largely able to overcome the screenplay's facilities. If all weed comedies were made with this much heart and polished with so many neat post-prod tricks, perhaps what they call 'pothead cinema' wouldn't have such a bad rep.