Dr. Rick Marshall's (Will Ferrell) belief in quantum paleontology and spending of $50 million of tax payers' money to prove that time warps exist is met with derision by Matt Lauer on the Today Show. Marshall begins to slide into obscurity, but a push from Oxford grad Holly Cantrell (Anna Friel, "Me Without You," TV's "Pushing Daisies"), a believer, gets Marshall out into the field to test his tachyon amplifier at the Devil's Canyon. The doctor and his research assistant pick up a third in tacky gift shop proprietor Will Stanton (Danny McBride, "Pineapple Express," HBO's "Eastside & Down"), acting as a tour guide for the legendary cave, and before Marshall's machine can finish one of the Chorus Line show tunes stored on its drive, the trio find themselves in the "Land of the Lost."
Will Ferrell has officially used up my cache of good will with this theatrical version of the old 70's Sid and Marty Krofft television series. Like last years "Journey to the Center of the Earth" without the 3-D but with plenty of gay jokes, poop jokes and Ferrell's over exposed flesh, "Land of the Lost" is an abomination, a PG-13 film being marketed to families that features masturbation, bestiality and an extended drug trip, only the last of which offers anything approaching humor.
Anna Friel must be one hell of an actress because she manages to stay wide-eyed and chipper throughout, beginning with meeting her idol as he comes to out of a 7 meal food coma. Once in lost land, she must put up with the friendly primate Chaka (Jorma Taccone, TV's SNL) constantly hanging onto her breast and the low brow musings of McBride. (By the time she sucks face with Ferrell near the film's finale, I wanted to throw up.)
Land of the Lost has three moons (is that because the time warp is a 'meeting of past, present and future?' which still makes no sense...) and a T-Rex who gets real angry when Marshall tells his colleagues that it has a brain 'the size of a walnut.' When in doubt, the filmmakers just throw in more T-Rex, the better to distract the audience from the sucking vacuum that is their movie. Then there are the Sleestack, rubber suited men with big shiny insect eyes and three sets of teeth. A gold colored one, Enik (voice of John Boylan, "Fever Pitch"), is found inside a lucite pyramid (something about crystals, yawn), and begs them to help him in his fight against The Zarn (voice of Leonard Nimoy) but later we find out he was lying. Screenwriters Chris Henchy (TV's "I'm With Her") & Dennis McNicholas (TV's SNL) were actually paid to write this?
There are two mildly funny set pieces. In one, an ice cream truck lands and is attacked by continually upscaling members of the food chain. The hallucinogenic trip features a giant crab which 'boils' itself and is otherwise funny because of its inappropriateness for this type of film.
Ferrell trots out the same old schtick and it has grown beyond tired. Once more he proudly strips down to reveal his out of shape bod. Once more he wields his inner gay. Whether writer or costume designer came up with the Florscheim boot gag, it's Ferrell's only funny of note. McBride's proven his comedy chops when put together with funny people ("Pineapple Express," "Tropic Thunder"), but this is payback time (Ferrell was one of McBride's "Fist Foot Way" supporters). Matt Lauer emerges mostly unscathed, pandering to Ferrell and Co. excepted, but it is just plain sad that Leonard Nimoy, coming off the high that is J.J. Abrams "Star Trek," had anything to do with this.
Robin did not see this film.
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