Once a darling of critics, David Gordon Green (George Washington and All the Real Girls) lately has been dabbling in low-brow comedy, first in 2008’s Pineapple Express and now with Your Highness.
Green manages to take two of last year’s prominent Oscar names — James Franco (nominee) and Natalie Portman (winner) on a downward spiraling ride.
For 27 years, Robert Denerstein was the film critic at The Rocky Mountain News. Read more of Robert's reviews at Denerstein Unleashed.
Tasteless and often downright ugly, Your Highness attempts to spoof the cliches of the sword-and-sorcery genre.
Danny McBride, who along with Franco appeared in Pineapple Express, plays a prince immersed in a sibling rivalry with his older brother Fabious (Franco). The brothers embark on a quest to save Fabious’ finacee (Zooey Deschanel).
Deschanel’s Belladonna has fallen into the clutches of the evil wizard Leezar (Justin Theroux). The brothers ultimately find Belladonna, but discover few laughs as the script pours on the F-word, something you can do at home without having to purchase a ticket.
Is it me or is there some kind of rule that after winning an Oscar, an actor must always appear in a bad movie? Oh well, at least Portman looks good.
The movie’s comic high point involves a severed penis. Does that tell you enough? No? Well, the presence of special effects makes the movie seem as overproduced as it is witless.
By the end, I was hoping that Your Highness wouldn’t raise its sword in in triumph, but would fall on it instead.