"JIM BREUER: LET’S CLEAR THE AIR"
by Kevin Carr
|| MOVIE: *** (out of 5 stars)
DVD EXPERIENCE: *1/2 (out of 5 stars)
Jim Breuer as HIMSELF
Studio: Comedy Central
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The former “Saturday Night Live” star and “Half Baked” comedian, Jim Breuer hits the stage with his new stand-up special “Let’s Clear the Air.” In this candid look at Breuer’s life, he waxes poetic about why he always looks stoned, what it’s like to raise three girls, his challenges of dealing with his geriatric father and how Goat Boy has followed him around for most of his adult life.
WHAT I LIKED
While I watched “Saturday Night Live” a lot while Jim Breuer was on the show, being just out of college, I lost track of the guy on the stand-up front. Not being a dope fan, I have never seen “Half Baked,” so one of Breuer’s most influential comedy pieces is still a stranger to me. In a bizarre way, I was able to approach his stand-up with a fresh eye, which I imagine is something he might like.
For a guy who has made part of his career honored by pot smokers around the country, Breuer takes a chance to figuratively clear the air about his life. He points out that just because his eyes look sunken in, he’s not high, and I can appreciate that. Instead of reveling in hash jokes for his perpetually young fan base, Breuer has grown a bit in his comedy, looking at life as a father and an adult, downplaying his moderately successful early days.
As a father of three boys, I can appreciate the family humor, even though the humor is not necessarily family oriented. That’s a welcome thing for me with Breuer and other comedians I’ve seen recently (like Jo Koy). I’ve got kids, so I get these jokes. Stoners in college, you might miss out on a few of these.
WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE
Breuer has a sharp wit, but he’s not the funniest comedian in America right now. His stand-up special is funny, and it has some nice material that makes me laugh. However, running a slim 71 minutes without much in the deleted scenes department, I felt the DVD didn’t pack as much punch as it could have.
And, as much as I can appreciate Breuer taking some pot shots at his past, he should move on with his material. Otherwise, his kids are going to be in college while he’s still talking “Half Baked” and Goat Boy.
The DVD comes with a look at the photo shoot for his box cover as well as a “Fireside Chat with Dad,” which features Breuer having a discussion with his elderly father, who is the butt of many jokes in the act. This is cute, with Breuer’s dad showing a nice amount of personality. However, I would have liked to see more behind-the-scenes features.
In fact, the DVD menus, which feature Breuer riffing throughout the loop, have their own special charm and humor. Don’t be afraid to let them run for five or ten minutes before making a choice.
WHO’S GOING TO LIKE THIS MOVIE
Goat Boy and “Half Baked” fanatics that have grown up a bit.