Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping

It's a feat to out-idiot TMZ culture. In achieving that, the fake-doc white-rapper satire Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping is a breakthrough for studio comedies, which here catch up to the metabolism of the internet age. In its generous, frenetic first hour, Popstar's jokes and parodies blast at you with the relentlessness of the dumbest, buzziest, most gif-happy Reddit threads. More than half the film skips past in montage: news clips, hashtags, concert footage, interview segments (Questlove, A$ap Rocky, Ringo Starr), music videos ("Karate Guy" goes "I like to kick it/I'm a karate guy"), all so over-the-top that the movie can see your house from up there. "I'm so humble," sings Andy Samberg's Conner4Real, the prick of a hero, a monster Frankensteined together from Justin Bieber, Macklemore, the early Beastie Boys and Robin Thicke.

The gags come too fast to track, especially in the white-bro hip-hop song pastiches. If you miss a dozen, don't worry. Directors and writers Akiva Schaffer and Jorma Taccone -- partners with co-writer Samberg in the Lonely Island comedy trio -- have rigged up a self-feeding perpetual-motion absurdity machine: The movie recycles its own jokes back at you, weirder and leveled up.

At least, it does all this for the first hour, before the rules of studio comedies finally kick in. The price we pay at the movies for watching a comedian trash everything our society holds dear is, as always, a third act in which that comedian's character learns to become society's idea of a better person, the kind we probably wouldn't want to see a comedy about.

Directors:

  • Akiva Schaffer
  • Jorma Taccone

Cast:

  • Andy Samberg
  • Jorma Taccone
  • Akiva Schaffer
  • Sarah Silverman
  • Tim Meadows
  • Maya Rudolph
  • Joan Cusack

Writers:

  • Andy Samberg
  • Akiva Schaffer
  • Jorma Taccone

Producers:

  • Judd Apatow
  • Rodney Rothman
  • Andy Samberg
  • Akiva Schaffer
  • Jorma Taccone

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping is not showing in any theaters in the area.

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