This is a movie with two completely different identities. The first is a mock spy thriller comedy, and the second is a cheap B-grade slasher.
The first 15-20 minutes is really good. It’s just joke after joke delivered wonderfully. And the variety of jokes at the start is amazing too; there are quick little pokes at the spy industry and vulgar tantrums that work perfectly. There is even the perfect romantic set-up for a spy thriller with the lead finding out that an ex works at the spy complex. So the first 20 minutes are set up for a really good movie.
Then everyone starts killing each other because the one lady said so. I think they try to reason it out as one group trying to kill the other group because of a botched job, but the only real explanation is one line, “Corporate has spoken, it’s time for omega team to be eliminated.” And this glorious insight into the reason isn’t even given until there are 4 people left alive.
And there’s the main crux of the movie, the two teams of assassins fighting in their office, the humor in the second half is supposed to come from the weapons they use to fight, since no one is allowed to bring weapons into the office, they fight with whatever they find around the office: umbrellas, putters, staple removers, table legs, and anything else they can get a hand on. Some of the fight scenes are pretty cool, but the blood CGI and CGI in general look horrible. If they would have kept up the first part of Operation: Endgame, they could have had a huge comedy hit on their hands, even if they followed about the same story it could have been okay. It is just the complete 180 in terms of mood that just ruins the second half of the movie.
It’s a great cast, so it’s a shame the movie isn’t up to back them up. Rob Corddry is the head of Omega team, he could just as easily play a character named Lou because it’s the exact same character as his character in Hot Tub Time Machine. Jeffrey Tambor plays the “Devil,” who is basically the boss of both teams and has a dreadfully small role. Ellen Barkin is the head of Alpha team; Joe Anderson is the main character in the movie as the story revolves around his first day on the job. Odette Yustman plays Anderson’s former partner and remains hot, so really you can watch the movie just for that reason – it’s not any worse than watching The Unborn for that reason. Odette can you please read a script before doing a movie? You’re 0-2 so far. And Zach Galifianakis plays “Hermit” who gets accused of killing the “Devil” and again the character isn’t all that different from Alan in The Hangover.
Operation: Endgame is presented in 2.40:1 Widescreen format and Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound.
The movie looks ok, the wounds look alright and the blood is done nicely. The CGI is another story, the big explosion at the end looks like video game fire, and I know video games have come a long way, but it looks bad.
Behind The Scenes of Operation: Endgame – Pretty standard behind the scenes stuff.
Alternate Opening – It’s not bad, doesn’t add much but could have been used and you wouldn’t really notice a difference in the way the film plays out.
Alternate Ending – Ridiculous. It’s the same ending, just shorter.
Great cast, not so great movie. I’ve seen other people call it the worst movie ever, but it’s not that bad. The first 20 minutes keep it from ever being in that category. There is humor throughout and it does just fine on that front, it will make you laugh, I can almost guarantee that. But the mood change to a B-Grade slasher doesn’t mix with the cast or the first 20 minutes, it’s not even a good B-grade slasher, I’ve seen much better. Overall, if you can Netflix or Redbox it so it doesn’t cost you much, I kind of recommend it because I think it is that funny.
Anchor Bay presents Operation: Endgame. Directed by: Fouad Mikati. Starring: Rob Corddry, Zach Galifianakis, and Jeffrey Tambor. Written by: Sam Levinson. Running time: 82 Minutes. Rating: Rated R. Released on DVD: July 27, 2010.