Rogen makes insane comedy lovable

Chandy Clemens

Ronnie Beinkhart, the lead character of Jody Hill’s latest feature “Observe and Report,” is no amiable “Pall Blart, mall cop”; Ronnie Beinkhart is his insane alter-ego. “Observe and Report” is misleading, and after all the vulgar, violent, and repulsive, but undeniably hilarious scenarios, “Observe and Report” turns out to be a darkly-layered character piece mistakingly advertised as a comedy.

Ronnie (Seth Rogen) is the product of a whimsical, always intoxicated mother (Celia Weston) and a father who walked out of the family due to all of Ronnie’s problems. And problems Ronnie has. Every 4-6 hours he downs a pill of Chlonazopan for depression; every hour on mall patrol he accuses an Indian booth-stand clerk of being Saddam Hussein; and every waking moment he dreams of serving up “hotplates of justice.”

When a pervert begins flashing unsuspecting mall-goers on Ronnie’s domain, Ronnie selflessly decides to lay himself and his other security-guard mates on the line for catching the flasher. His disillusioned thought process soon leads him to believe that the mall-flasher has the intentions to murder the love of his life, Brandi (a hysterical, gut busting Anna Faris), a beautiful, dumb-blonde department store worker who was victim to the horrifying flashing.

“Observe and Report” is not for everyone. A lot of people are going to turn a cold-shoulder to Jody Hill’s twisted sense of humor. You may care for Ronnie, you might not care for him, but Jody Hill makes sure you’re confused on which side to take when his leading character is literally a crazed fanatic.

He smashes skateboards over rebellious teenagers in the parking lot, he snorts lines of cocaine while on the job; he is that type of guy that no one should want to be around, but Seth Rogen makes you love the crazy character. He faithfully translates the berserk, psychologically unstable Ronnie into a man you want to succeed in his delusions despite his often grotesque and intense methods.

Jody Hill faltered on keeping his film’s theme consistent. It was advertised as an Apatow-like comedy, but it reallly was not. “Observe and Report” is very dark, and it will make you secondguess yourself, leaving you wondering, was that funny or just disturbing?