The last time audiences saw Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson together on screen they were charming their way into weddings with fast talking and smooth dance moves in the 2005 box office hit “The Wedding Crashers”. In “The Internship”, the duo tries to replicate their previous success by crashing the Google party with similar moves but with far less charm and wit.
The Internship goes with a lazy copy and paste method of movie making replacing weddings with a Google internship, creative humor with familiar punch lines, and Rachel McAdams with Rose Byrne as Wilson’s love interest. All of which end up being cheap substitutes.
The film begins with a familiar “Wedding Crashers” vibe as Billy played by Vaughn and Nick played by Wilson prepare for a sales pitch by practicing their fake back stories with each other. After Billy and Nick lose their jobs as watch salesman, they decide to apply for an internship using fake backgrounds and through a heavy dose of pity and strange reasoning they are accepted.
“The Internship” may have been tolerable to watch if it had continue to mirror the “Wedding Crashers” plot but instead it veers off from there into an orgy of Google product placement and uninspired performances by everyone involved – fueled by a stale, predictable script.
Billy and Nick are put into a group of nerdy cast offs that are competing with other groups of interns for a coveted entry level job at Google.
The idea of Vaughn and Wilson as aging hipsters who still refer to the internet as “the online” going up against the younger tech savvy interns has appeal but fails to gain traction.
Vaughn reaches back to his “Dodgeball” character to try and motivate his underdog group of interns with obscure references to “Flashdance” but fails to connect with either the interns or the audience. The initial intrigue of how Billy and Nick can reasonably succeed at Google despite having zero tech knowledge is quickly wasted as the pair predictably fails at first and then manages to win everyone over by getting the younger interns drunk at strip clubs and mentoring their stereotypical insecurities.
However, there are some worthwhile moments where the film succeeds at taking advantage of the Vaughn/Wilson pairing, specifically when they are sent on a mission to track down a bald professor in a wheelchair named Xavier and end up getting assaulted.
Ultimately the film wastes the comic pairing of not only Vaughn and Wilson but the talents of Ferrell and John Goodman with its weak script and poor character development. In fact, the only thing “The Internship” succeeds at is being a promotional vehicle for Google products and employment. So if you have ever wondered what it would be like to work for a company that offers free food, colorful bikes to ride, and sleeping pods then look no further than “The Internship” presented by Google.