I’m not generally a fan of ye olde stoner comedy but I thought Pineapple Express was great, so I had reasonably high expectations for Your Highness. On paper, it makes perfect sense. It follows the tried-and-trusted formula of putting people in amusing costumes, pretending they live in medieval times, and giving them modern-day dialogue to work with. The cast is much better than it needs to be, so everything should really work. Right?
Not so much. The fundamental problem with Your Highness is that it appears to have been written by a 14-year-old with ADD, ADHD, OCD or some such acronym. This would be fine if the ended audience was the same age and had the same penchant for dick jokes, but I don’t think that is the case. My memory is a little hazy at the best of times but I’m pretty sure that when I was 14 I could barely tie my own shoelaces, let alone understand a drug reference.
There are just so many things that are wrong with this film, I don’t even know where to begin. The plot is disjointed, the dialogue is AWFUL, it isn’t funny, and you are forced to look at an oversized comedy penis for a good portion of it. Again, this might be titillating to 14-year-old who is off his face on Pepsi Max, but then, so is Spongebob Squarepants. I am an adult, and expect things that are marketed toward me to be a little more palatable I’m afraid.
My poor boggled mind can just about fathom why Danny McBride and Zooey Deschanel might have been coerced/tricked/blackmailed into partaking in this mess, but I am at a loss as to why James Franco and Natalie Portman agreed to appear. I really am. Maybe they were particularly strapped for cash in the run-up to Christmas, and thought this might be a good way to ensure their loved ones’ stockings were suitably filled.
This really is a terrible film, and I’m struggling to think of any redeeming factors. I guess it’s not totally devoid of humour… in fact I’m pretty sure I might have smirked once or twice, but they were sad, mournful smirks, laced with pity for the person who had written the joke and a tinge of shame at the notion that I might be garnering even the tiniest ounce of enjoyment from such nonsense.
What annoys me most is that I genuinely thought I would enjoy this. And in fairness in an alternate universe, it could have been a decent, if unremarkable comedy. Unfortunately it falls so very short of any expectations I might have had for it. What’s the opposite of ‘recommend’? ‘Discommend’? I discommend this film enormously.