Half Baked is a moronic comedy. Other films to fall under this category include Weekend at Bernies 2, Meet Wally Sparks, and The Pest. Moronic comedies tend to be, well, moronic. But this isn't a bad thing. Every once in a while, it's good to go to the movies, and just check your brain at the door.
Half Baked wants to be a classic moronic movie, but it's just too stupid to achieve that goal. It's the story of four potheads who sit around and do nothing. Indeed, their biggest decision seems to be whether or not to get high with a joint, or with a rather elaborate contraption they've nicknamed "Billy Bong Thornton." This all changes one day, when one of the potheads is out buying "munchies," and spots a hungry-looking horse. Being the kindly pothead that he is, he feeds it a few bags of sweets. Unfortunately, the horse drops dead. And wouldn't you know it, the horse was diabetic. And even worse, it was a police horse. The pothead is quickly sent to prison for killing a cop, and the rest of the film follows his friends attempts to raise bail money.
This is a very silly movie, and nothing more. But, even at a running time of less than 80 minutes, about halfway through, I started to get bored. It's not particularly funny, either. There were only two sequences that had me laughing out loud. One was a truly inspired take-off of that scene in Jerry Maguire where Tom Cruise leaves his office for the last time. The other was a hilarious cameo by Bob Saget, wherein he explains the lengths he had to go to in order to acquire cocaine. That one scene alone is almost worth the price of admission.
The film doesn't really have much else going for it, though. The script, written by Dave Chappelle, is downright awful at times. Some of the dialogue is so forced and unrealistic, I started to wonder if Chappelle has ever even left his house. I think had the script contained lines that actually sounded like things real people would say, the film might have been improved quite a bit.
I wouldn't bother seeing this one. Wait until it hits the cheapie cinemas, or, and I don't know if this is possible for anyone reading this, actually get high before viewing the film. I have a feeling that could improve it, but no guarantees.
*1/2 out of ****
© David Nusair 1998