To paraphrase Mel Brooks, “Tragedy is when I cut my finger. Comedy is the second time the dead stripper in penis sunglasses falls off a Jet Ski.” Or maybe it’s just Rough Night, a raunchy, wildly off-the-rails farce from the team that more or less brought you Broad City.
Scarlett Johansson is Jess, a 30ish Senate candidate who can barely spare a minute to sit down for Seamless with her fiancé (Paul W. Downs, also a co-writer), let alone celebrate their upcoming union. Her college roommate Alice (Jillian Bell) is the one who insists on reuniting the old crew for an elaborate bachelorette weekend in Miami — including freelance radical Frankie (Ilana Glazer) and Blair (Zoë Kravitz), now a sleek corporate type — even if their paths have diverged since their dorm-room days of midnight Doritos and beer pong. (The arrival of Jess’ Australian year-abroad friend Pippa, played with cracked New Age glee by Kate McKinnon, is a cross she’ll have to bear.)
Somewhere between the cocaine, the Weenie Linguine, and the Craigslist gigolo, things somehow begin to go wrong. Director Lucia Aniello stacks her loose cannon of a script with a few truly great bits and some inspired casting — including Ty Burrell and Demi Moore as a pair of predatory, praline-colored swingers — but then never quite trusts their gifts, blowing out her Girls Just Wanna Have Hangovers conceit until it feels like the summer-movie equivalent of a fidget spinner: shiny, manic, and spiraling to nowhere. C+