Observe and Report
It would be a shame to confuse Rogen’s semidisturbing comedy with that other fat-guy-falls-down laffer Paul Blart: Mall Cop. The obvious influence here is Taxi Driver, but let’s trot out the real companion piece, 1996’s The Cable Guy. Much like Jim Carrey’s bizarre, off-putting attempt to broaden his range into pitch-black cringe comedy, Observe and Report shows Rogen bidding for an Act II after lovable screen schlubdom. This is not the stuff of typical Hollywood fare. Such risks should be saluted even when they don’t fully pay off; writer-director Hill has a very antagonistic sense of humor. Extended scenes and outtakes suggest a cult film in the making.