Pizza Shop: The Movie - Homage
Unlike most films, I've always believed that comedy is the hardest genre to make work for an audience. Comedy is extremely subjective and what one person might find funny another person will not find funny at all, kind of how I feel about "Workaholics," I love it but my wife will merely tolerate it. That's why I commend anyone who, first if all, creates something, and I'll give them double commendation when they create a comedy. "Pizza Shop: The Movie" is a nice homage to comedy of the 80s and even some more modern comedy with it's tongue planted firmly in its cheek.
"Pizza," directed by George O'Barts, is centered around a pizza shop and it's colorful staff. Told through what seems to be a series of montages including training the shop's new delivery boy, going the extra mile for that tip, creating new and exciting tomato sauce recipes, and pulling off the perfect prank on a co-worker. The main story revolves around Pete, the shop's pride and joy, and his co-worker Jason, who wants to see nothing more than Pete fall from grace. As things heat up and Pete is finally sent over the edge, a battle of wills between Pete and Jason threaten to tear Pizza Shop apart and could land them all behind bars.
I'll put this out there right away, if you're easily offended or gross-out comedy really isn't your slice of pizza, you might be a little shocked. O'Barts pushes the limits in some scenes and it's fun to see someone taking a risk in their comedy. "Pizza" reminds me a lot of "....Waiting," a touch of "Poultygiest" with it's wacky cast of characters and even a little bit of "Clerks." I love all three of those films and to see some influences from those films makes me appreciate "Pizza" even more.
You can see the comparison to "Clerks" in the way that film cuts from scene to scene, jumping from story to story. While there is a complete narrative, O'Bart is still able to break the film up into different sections that each tell a different story about an individual character, or group of characters.
All in all, "Pizza" is indeed the raunchy off-color comedy it claims to be, and it does it quite well. The production design is strong, the camera work is actually quite good for a small budget indie, and the story is fun and reminiscent of gross-out comedies of the past. They say "imitation is he best form of flattery" and "Pizza" is able to pull enough from the past while still being it's own film.
You can find more information about "Pizza Shop: The Movie" right HERE. I'd like to thank George O'Bart with furnishing me with a copy of his film to review.