4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
More hype than anything else ...,
This review is from: Four Lions - Special Edition [DVD] (DVD)Four Lions is a film that, to be blunt, has been hyped beyond its substance. Yes, there are people out there who will disapprove of the content, but I'm a believer that comedy is at its best when pushing the boundaries of 'acceptability'. The problem is that Four Lions isn't actually that good and, had it dealt with other subject matter that was less likely to be publicised by the media, I suspect it wouldn't have the ratings some here have given it. 5 stars? Is it as good as Hot Fuzz or Shawn of the Dead? No ... not by a long shot.
The story is relatively simple. Four young Muslims decide to become suicide bombers and the film follows their completely inept training, planning, and terrorist attempt. I have to admit, as a source of comedy material, Four Lions is quite a brilliant idea but it's let down by a poor execution (no pun intended!). There was lots of comedy gold to be mined from the initial concept but Four Lions never really gets there - it takes an idea, runs with it long enough to be amusing, then pulls back. Some of it is quite badly directed and scripted and you're not quite sure what, exactly, happened. A training scene in Pakistan is a prime example and, if you watch it, you'll understand what I mean.
The end result is a film that will have you smiling through most of it, but laugh out loud moments are few and far between (I counted three with the friends I watched it with). It tends to be a little too silly and childish for the subject matter at times, and also tends not to delve too deeply into the characters. All in all, Four Lions is amusing for its running length but a little thin.