It’s generally not a good sign when a film’s press notes offer more humor than the film itself. In the notes Director David Wain (Wet Hot American Summer) noted that “After ninety seconds long on Google, he’d learned not only what the Ten Commandments were, but what order they were in. He was thrilled to discover that all Ten Commandments were available – they’d been optioned by Universal but they had reverted back to the writer last year. Now if only they had spent more than ninety seconds writing the script they might have had something worthwhile. Anyway, let’s consider the 10 Commandments associated with this film that offers 10 interconnected vignettes based on those famous imperatives.
1- Thou shalt not create a film based on sophomoric humor in disguise of witty comedy.
2- Thou shalt not tie together episodes with an obtuse tale of a man (Paul Rudd) who presents each story while fraught with his own moral dilemma of whether to remain with his wife (Famke Janssen) or opt for the younger mistress (Jessica Alba) behind door number two.
3- Thou shalt not waste celluloid with ideas including the one about a doctor (Ken Marino) who kills his patients as a “goof.” It reaches bad Saturday Night Live depths.
4- Thou shalt not borrow ideas from other films. For example, when a woman (Winona Ryder) falls in love with and has sex with a ventriloquist’s dummy. Maybe it’s not exactly the film Magic but close enough.
5- Regarding the above rule, thou shalt not direct or cast Winona Ryder in a part where she has “dummy sex”.
6- Thou shalt not include banal gay prison humor to any film without the consent of the humor police.
7- Thou shall not waste the “talents” of Jessica Alba by making her play a party girl just to have her name in the credits for marketing purposes.
8 – Thou shalt not think that your film is automatically funny just because you cast your friends who worked on the MTV sketch comedy series “The State.”
9- Thou shalt make an oath not to make a “sequel” based on the Seven Deadly Sins or any other list.
10 – Thou did keep the film a compact 95 minutes which shows that a higher being may exist.