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About to sell his successful flavor extract company, life is almost sweet for Joel (Jason Bateman) until a freak onthejob accident happens. Add to that his bored wife (Kristen Wiig), his laidback, stoner best friend (Ben Affleck), a sexy con artist (Mila Kunis) who blows into town with dollar signs in her bedroom eyes, and a dumb gigolo and life as he knows it turns sour.
Movie Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes
- Reviews Counted: 184
- Fresh: 116
- Rotten: 68
- Average Rating: 5.9/10
Top Critics' Reviews
Fresh: Right in time for the economic downturn comes Extract, a smart and potently funny workplace comedy about running a small business just as small businesses get routinely run into the ground.
Fresh: This isn't a misanthropic picture; its true subject is the way love for our fellow human beings is so often thwarted by their actual behavior -- and still, stupidly perhaps, we just won't give up on them.
Fresh: Mike Judge's Extract -- modest, no big deal but very savvy -- is the funniest American comedy of the summer.
Rotten: [Extract] resembles its titular foodstuffs: less a fully realized comedy than the distillation of one. The ingredients are there, and the recipe as well, but Judge evidently forgot that the whole dish still needed cooking.
Waste of Time
Not laugh out loud funny, chuckle to yourself funny, or any kind of funny at all.
It’s like Office Space if the boss were the hero and the workers were the idiots
This is the third film from Beavis and Butthead/King of the Hill creator Mike Judge. Office Space, his first, flopped at the box office but became a cult classic via cable and video, while Idiocracy barely even received a theatrical release, but wasn’t bad. Extract sort of inverts the viewpoint of Office Space, in which underutilized white-collar workers rage against dull or foolish middle management types. Here a factory owner (Jason Bateman) is the mild-mannered hero, with a motley assortment of blue-collar types nursing petty gripes and falsely accusing the new guy, a Latino, of stealing. Frustrated by supervising this bunch and by a nearly sexless marriage, he longs to find a buyer for his business and cash out.
Add in a pretty swindler (Mila Kunis), a flaky bartender (Ben Affleck), a wifty giglo, and an assembly-line mishap and you have most of the comedic ingredients. It has a lot of the feel of Office Space in being dense with unpredictable plotting, which I won’t give away, and memorable characters. I haven’t even mentioned JK Simmons as Bateman’s second in command, who refers to most of the employees as “Dingus,” Kristen Wiig as his wife, and a creepy Gene Simmons (of KISS) as a sleazy lawyer. As with Judge’s other two films, it’s these supporting characters that make the film distinctive. That’s not to say Bateman is dull, just that he’s playing the normal character that keeps the movie from getting too silly.
There’s something about all three of Judge’s movies that makes me want to watch them again, and I never watch movies again. They’re sort of easy to watch. I wouldn’t say any is quite hilarious, but each of them features a bunch of set pieces that continue to amuse even after the movie is over. The running subplot with an unctuously annoying neighbor is one such for me, the character being a less-original counterpart to oily boss Bill Lumberg in Office Space. I’d rank this just behind Office Space overall, too. But I bet if if this comes on cable one day, and I turn it on in the middle, I’ll probably sit down and watch a few scenes and not even worry that I missed the beginning.
Save your money!