(Long Island, N.Y.) The Sitter: totally unoriginal, vaguely offensive, kinda weird, yet still entertaining and, dare I say it, even funny. It stars Jonah Hill playing Jonah Hill playing Noah, a fat college dropout who acts just like Jonah Hill does in every movie he’s ever made since Superbad.
If you don’t understand what I’m getting at, Hill just plays the same character over and over, but unlike his Superbad co-star McLovin’ (I forget his real name, nor do I care), his act doesn’t appear to have worn thin with audiences and thus, Hill still enjoys a career. However, I suspect that Hill does possess some actual acting range, buried somewhere under the nerdy wise-guy persona he’s honed over the last few years.
Anyway, Noah is a college dropout, like I said, and he’s also never held a job, so to make a few bucks and help his mom go out on a date, he begrudgingly agrees to take a gig as a babysitter for some wealthy friends of the family. Of course, all three kids turn out to be nut-jobs, each in their own unique way. But if just watching a few kids for an evening wasn’t enough, Noah also has to deal with a leech-like druggie girlfriend, and oddball drug dealer (played by Sam Rockwell, who is awesome as always), and an assortment of street thugs, weirdos, car thieves, schoolmates, and whatever else you can think of.
But if Noah is just babysitting a few kids for an evening, how does he get involved in all these misadventures, you ask? Well, it’s best left up to you to discover by actually buying a ticket and seeing the movie, but let’s just say that Noah is the last person you should ever hire if you’re expecting your babysitter NOT to load your kids into your minivan and go to the city to score cocaine for their girlfriend, only to bring the wrath of half the lowlifes in existence down upon their heads. But really, other than that, Noah is a great guy. Honest!
So, with such a film, what does one take away from it? Well, here’s a list of things I learned from watching The Sitter:
- Adopted kids like to break your furniture, pee on your floor, and blow up your toilet.
- Drug dealers like to hang out with lots and lots of bodybuilders.
- Black people will like you if you let them hit you.
- A single cherry bomb can destroy an entire jewelry store.
- You can always tell if a child is gay if they dress nicely.
- Cops love to steal your jewelry and drugs and then go off to party.
- If you’re looking for someone, just drive around randomly…you’ll find them.
- Children are insane little maniacs. All of them.
- Drug dealers love letting strange little kids in pajamas use their bathrooms.
- Nice, hard-working well-educated college girls like to hang out in seedy bars deep, deep in the ghetto.
Yes, there are many thought-provoking life lessons to be learned from this film. But The Sitter’s morally reprehensible and somewhat racially-insensitive core is camouflaged with a shiny veneer of wit, albeit predictable and overused wit. But it is wit nonetheless, and the actors, Jonah Hill included, all manage to be likable…not at first, but they do grow on you after a while. Yes, even the adopted kid who pees on the floor.
So, The Sitter is not fine cinema, or even decent cinema, but it still manages to be a fun, mindless little romp that displays little logic or originality, but a fair handful of humor. And sometimes, you just need to turn your brain off and laugh a little.