Referencing Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson’s latest on screen partnership as the Google film is a level assumption. Those familiar primary colours are flexed heavily throughout Shawn Levy’s latest, which follows salesmen Billy and Nick as they struggle to adjust to the force of the online marketplace.
To dismiss The Internship as ‘just the Google’ film however would be a misjudgement. It is questionable why a fictitious search engine couldn’t be tailored for the purpose of the film but with a well-oiled leading duo and a sweet centred screenplay, The Internship startlingly surpasses the blazing product placement and survives as a pretty enjoyable film.
Forced out of their daytime professions when business reaches a pitiful low, the boys turn blindly to online sales, landing all too easily a spot on the hotly desirable Google intern programme. Quickly dismissed as old and past it, they find themselves thrown together with the misfit bunch, with whom they must work to earn jobs.
Sadly stereotypes come heavy handed with the fellow interns. Apparently in Hollywood no Asian teen has parents that aren’t as strict as they are cruel, and the old putting glasses on someone attractive to make them inept trick is fooling no one. As Nick and Billy pry them away from their devices and lead them blinking into real world you to warm to them however. Such is the ease at which Vaughn and Owen lead their pack of rejects in fact, finishing each other’s sentences and earnestly handing out lessons they’ve picked up along the way, that you find yourself really routing for their success.
One of the largest flaws in films of this ilk of the last few years is the complete unlikeability of some, if not all of its leading roles. Here Owen’s charm and Vaughn’s instability are predictable but are welcome in the hostile and competitive environment that they have to adapt to. Peril is mild, with their primary threat being a horrid British graduate (Max Minghella) and a tricky game of ground based Quidditch.
The brain melting amount of product placement aside, The Internship passes as a pleasing comedy and a relevant nod to both a generation struggling to adapt and one incapable of walking straight out of education into employment. “The American dream that you talk about doesn’t exist anymore,” one intern argues. Thankfully likeable protagonists do and even if the concept is commercialised it is refreshing, so it’s worth looking past the red, blue, yellow and green to see what’s going on underneath.