“Masterminds” | Movie Review

masterminds_2016_8699227Grade (C+)

A fun comedy that tries a lot of the same old genre tricks but still provides some laughs.

“MASTERMINDS” is the new comedy from director Jared Hess called starring; Zach Galifianakis, Kate McKinnon, Kristen Wiig, Owen Wilson, Leslie Jones and Jason Sudeikis.

This story follows the 1997 robbery of Loomis Fargo that netted a staggering $17 million in cash and was one of the largest heists in the country. Even more astonishing was that a group of bumbling criminals and a common employee pulled it off. The problem was the group was not smart enough to successfully cover their tracks as the law closed in on them.

It goes without saying you know what you are getting into when you watch a comedy like this. There will be tons of slapstick and situational humor, loads physical comedy, a barrage of one liners, and tons of crude jokes. This film delivers all of that, but with a comic heavy cast, the generic material will still provide some amusement.

The cast makes the most of the dialogue and scenarios which adds some solid humor to this film. Some in the representation of their characters alone. Zach Galifianakis shined in the lead; he was his usual quirky, eccentric, and odd self which blended perfectly with this role. Kristen Wig was also pretty solid in this film, she brought the story a solid female lead and exuded the exaggerated backwoods persona.


Wilson, McKinnon and Sudeikis were all fun characters in this weird story-line as well, and their performances all resulted in some laughable moments. In particular that of Sudeikis who was excellent as the grimy contract killer with a soft side. Leslie Jones also had some comical moments with her minimal screen time and I can easily say her, Wiig and McKinnon were all much more amusing in this film compared to their recent outing in the failed “Ghostbusters” reboot.

You can say a lot of things about this story, but it was definitely unique, and a perfect foundation for a wildly adventurous comedy. It was dumb at times, very fun at times, will provide some memorable lines, but despite the cast it will end up being a somewhat forgettable comedy. The dialogue was entertaining for a brainless night with a movie but it was built on too many routine lines and recycled comical moments.

It was still a good time, it may not be something to rush out and see, but the cast dove into their roles, had a strong chemistry with one another, and it shows onscreen. There were loads of cultural stereotypes all throughout this story-line even down to the locations, props, and wardrobes, but they work well into the comedy and result in harmless laughs.

Being based on a true story or not, this was a very exaggerated script, but with the film-makers, and the cast all looked to enjoy the comedic angle the project wanted, resulting in dumb fun. This film is clear on its comedic intentions, there is a lot of forced humor, but a good amount of laughable lines, and a handful of honestly hilarious moments in this one also. If you like what you see in the trailer, then you will certainly find some enjoyment in this film.

Time: 95 min

MPAA Rating: PG-13 (For crude and sexual humor, some language and violence)