‘The Dilemma’ Challenges the Conventions of Comedy

The Dilemma
The cast finally faces 'The Dilemma.' (Universal Pictures)

Remember when comedies used to be funny? ‘The Dilemma,‘ starring Vince Vaughn, Kevin James, Jennifer Connelly, Winona Ryder, and Channing Tatum, challenges that conventional thinking, but maybe not in the way the filmmakers intended.

“If you like characters who don’t speak and act in a recognizably human way, you’ll love “The Dilemma,” the new comedy from director Ron Howard, starring Vince Vaughn and Kevin James as ostensible best friends. If you enjoy comedies that are rambling and witless, and rely on hurtful physical gags, so much the better.”

You can read my full review at Red Carpet Crash. Would you like a second opinion?

“A myriad of subplots piled into the trunk of a lemon. …  A mess, in short— not comedy, not drama, not clever, not insightful, only forgettable.”

That’s from Robert Wilonsky’s capsule review, which appears in the LA Weekly — and possibly other Village Voice Media publications — but not, as far as I can see, in the Dallas Observer, not even in the online edition. Strange that it’s missing, but he certainly captures the spirit of the thing, as when he describes Vaughn’s character Ronnie: “His inability to reveal the infidelity sends Ronny into a slapstick free-for-pratfall.”

The films open today at multiplexes throughout the Metroplex.