Review: ‘Mike and Dave’ needs more than a wedding date

Thinly written comedy is a composite of other, better movies that came before it

Adam Graham
The Detroit News

“Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates” is a film very loosely based on the story of two party bros who placed a Craigslist ad looking for dates to a wedding.

Outside of the ad, most of the story has been changed, so what we have here is a movie based on a Cragislist ad. Suddenly “Snapchat: The Movie” is looking like fertile creative ground.

Zac Efron and Adam DeVine play the Stangle brothers, life of the party-types who act like frat house goofuses when in big crowds. In an effort to get them to cool down, their parents beg them to line up dates for their sister’s upcoming wedding. They turn to Craigslist, since everything they do is a big gag, and start “interviewing” candidates.

The movie’s flip on its premise in that the brothers find two girls who are equally as crazy as them. But “crazy” is difficult to define when everything is this thinly written, so in walk Tatiana (Aubrey Plaza) and Alice (Anna Kendrick), two bong-ripping “Broad City” types who are scamming the guys to get a free trip to Hawaii. Joke’s on Mike and Dave! Or something?

“Mike and Dave” is a composite of other movies you’ve already seen; “Wedding Crashers” is an obvious antecedent, so much so that the main characters note the similarities to it on screen.

The movie goes for a bawdy, “outrageous” vibe and big laughs, which it lands less than half the time. The roles are so broadly written — “SNL” characters have more depth — that it’s impossible to care about anyone or the situations they’re in.

“Mike and Dave” is like being stuck with a bad wedding date. In the language of Craigslist, this one’s a missed connection.

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Twitter: @grahamorama

‘Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates’


Rated R for crude sexual content, language throughout, drug use and some graphic nudity

Running time: 98 minutes