Remember when movies revolved around children were just that, children movies? Nowadays, you’re lucky not to find adult themes in movies where the majority of the cast is kids. Now, depending on the setting, it is becoming increasingly acceptable, and honestly quite hilarious. However, no matter whether it is children or adult themed, “Nature Calls” cannot be saved.
Patton Oswalt plays Randy, your typical Boy Scout enthusiast that wants nothing more than to get out one last time with his dying father to camp out with the boy scouts. There is one problem, no longer are the scouts a thing. Instead, the boys would rather stay in and watch television all night. After the boys have a sleepover, Randy kidnaps the boys and tells them they are going on an adventure. Randy’s brother, Kirk (Johnny Knoxville), learns about this, and ventures off to find and destroy his brother, as being a Boy Scout and camping is obviously the worse thing in the world.
In the scheme of things, that is all the movie has to offer. There is no real heart underneath the rest of the garbage that this film holds, and the comedy is extremely dull. It will be a surprise if anyone finds this film funny. In fact, the movie is not even deserving of a failed TV sitcom. It was that bad. What was the goal of the movie? Surely it wasn’t to teach boys the importance of being a Scout, because that was ignored. Surely it wasn’t about making an audience laugh, because practically the entire film lacked humor. It may have tried to get these messages across, but nothing was effective.
Imagine a screenwriter sitting at a desk about to lose his job if he doesn’t write another movie, and this is what he wrote. That’s right, it may not be true, but this film may as well have been a filler project in order to keep one screenwriter from losing a job, nothing more. What is hard to pinpoint is the reason why some of the actors in the film chose their roles, because it wasn’t filled with unknowns, there was a few very recognizable names in the film. Other than Oswalt and Knoxville, there was also Rob Riggle, Darrell Hammond, and even Maura Tierney.
Some of these actors have gone beyond proving their abilities in the past with unforgettable roles. Where were their heads when they chose roles for this film? Is their career really that lacking to be at the point where any movie was a good choice? The only thing you might think is that the movie was trying to be “Moonrise Kingdom”, another Boy Scout centered film that received an abundance of positive reception. However much it may have attempted to be like “Moonrise Kingdom”, it failed at every turn.
If you took the time to write down a list of both positives and negatives in the film, your list would be overflowing with negatives while the positives may have you getting stuck past the actors involved. This is only a prime example of when picking known actors doesn’t subsequently make a movie good. You will only end up feeling bad for some of them, mostly speaking Patton Oswalt. His role was a stinker, as was the movie as a whole.
“Nature Calls” comes to Blu-Ray and DVD on Jan. 22, so you know which movie to avoid when you see it at your local Wal-Mart.