Yet another attempt to mix raunchy excess and romantic-comedy sweetness in an anything-goes raucous farce, “The Babymakers” offers a few big laughs between ho-hum stretches of frenetic vamping. It’s the latest directorial effort of Broken Lizard comedy trouper Jay Chandrasekhar (“Super Troopers”), who gives himself a showy supporting role as an image-conscious alumnus of the Indian mafia. That character provides unreliable assistance to perpetrators of the small-time caper that propels this sporadically amusing laffer, a trifle best suited for smallscreen consumption.Thirtysomething Tommy (Paul Schneider) is embarrassed by his inability to impregnate his beautiful wife (Olivia Munn). And he’s incredulous when he flunks fertility tests, since he secretly earned money for his deposits at a sperm bank years earlier. Desperation drives him to recruit buddies for a robbery of said bank, to retrieve the last of Tommy’s frozen sperm, leading to a heist that climaxes with literally sticky slapstick. “Babymakers” slyly suggests that repeated blows to the groin — chronic sight gags in comedies such as this — are what diminished Tommy’s once-potent reproductive prowess. Nothing else in the pic is quite as clever as that concept. Tech values are par.
An IM Global presentation of a Blumhouse production in association with Duck Attack Films and Automatik Entertainment. Produced by Jason Blum, Brian Kavanaugh-Jones, Jay Chandrasekhar. Executive producers, Charles Layton, Stuart Ford, Kevin Heffernan. Directed by Jay Chandrasekhar. Screenplay, Peter Gaulke, Gerry Swallow.
Camera (color), Frankie DeMarco; editor, Brad Katz; music, Edward Shearmur; production designer, Katie Bryon; costume designer, Tricia Gray. Reviewed at SXSW Film Festival (Narrative Spotlight), March 10, 2012. Running time: 98 MIN.
Paul Schneider, Olivia Munn, Kevin Heffernan, Wood Harris, Nat Faxon, Aisha Tyler, Collette Wolfe, Hayes Macarthur, Lindsey Kraft, Jay Chandrasekhar.