'Baywatch' Has One of the Grossest Scenes in Forever
Last month, Dwayne Johnson promised a different kind of Baywatch, one that was going to be "far dirtier than the show ever was." How exactly do you make the adaptation of a syndicated TV property dirtier? With a higher flesh quota, "more gratuitous boobs, bums, abs, whatever per minute than you can imagine," the former wrestler said. If the trailer was any indication, maybe there'd also be a dick joke or two.
The movie follows Mitch Buchannon (Johnson) and his team of life guards as they try to rid their beach of a flakka trade that's corrupting high-ranking officials and endangering locals. If you saw Baywatch this weekend, you now know that this is not just an action-packed drug-bust comedy that comes with a dick joke or two. It comes with dick set pieces.
Impossible to forget is the surprising gross-out taint prank, the movie's Bourne car chase of dick jokes, complete with meticulous attention to detail, stunning choreography, unflinching devotion to sophomoric humor, and -- and! -- a moral. Here's the tame version:
While investigating the cause of a councilman's death, Johnson and co-star Zac Efron sneak into a morgue. They easily find the councilman's body, but instead of looking at medical records for answers, Johnson has another idea: "I need you to check his taint for needle marks," he says, rolling out the corpse. "Lift his ball sack and check for anything unusual."
"Dude, it's a taint," Efron says. "It's a taint."
"Get deeper. Lift the balls up higher. And get closer."
"There's a big something, there's something. Oh, there is a hole -- that's just his butt hole."
All that before Efron jumps into a body fridge to hide from bad guys and accidentally swallows a glob of melted cadaver fat.
The promo clip above obscures the frank and beans, but the R-rated movie does not, opting to show, oddly enough, everything but the dead man's grundle. There's even talk of a yogurt stench, so you kind of feel like you're there, inspecting with Efron. In other words, Johnson and company deliver. Big screen Baywatch proves far dirtier than TV Baywatch, joining the ranks of other comedies -- Borat, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, and The Greasy Strangler come to mind -- that have used male full-frontal to try for laughs.
To the movie's credit, the taint gag (kinda) tries to speak to the main relationship that drives the movie. Efron's character, Matt Brody, a new recruit to Mitch's team, is the type of guy who isn't a team player, who doesn't believe he should be helping his comrades bust a drug ring. (That's police work, isn't it?) Mitch shows Brody tough love till the latter changes. The taint investigation is just one step in the journey to maturity.
While that's mostly it on the nudity front, if your mind is still reeling from the wait-did-they-really-do-that factor of the taint prank, you might have forgotten about the other dick set piece, when Ronnie, played by Jon Bass, gets his junk stuck in a chair for what feels like 10 minutes. (Yeah, that happened too, another example of the movie going for gratuitous "fun.") The focus lent to these extended genital bits might make you question America's prudish relationship with nudity in media. For here's a movie that wants to revamp its source material by being self-aware, dumb, funny, and full of action... but why does it feel so old hat to see Priyanka Chopra's villainous character blown to bits and so extraordinary when there's a scene devoted to taint?
"To me, [male nudity is] just funny," British director Jim Hosking said last year, while promoting his movie The Greasy Strangler, a surreal cult favorite that prominently features penises. "In America, it seems to be a bigger issue to have male nudity, whether it's genuine or not. Whereas, I saw Deadpool the other day with my son, and I found the violence in that really quite strong. I could not understand why nobody talks about the violence in films -- sorry, I'm proselytizing now -- but it's strange to me that it's such a big deal that in our film there's some dicks."
In an interview with TODAY, Efron said Johnson wanted to "turn [Baywatch] on its ear" and "make it more relevant to today's audience." Early critics have yet to be convinced -- what did you think about the new take on Emerald Bay? Sound off in the comments.
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