This Is the End ★★½

Things Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg like: Pulp's "Disco 2000" (in the background of the opening party, there if you want to hear it and inconspicuous if you don't know it), easy movie parodies ("The Exorcism of Jonah Hill"), as many non-actual penises as an R rating can accommodate (something we already knew from Superbad), marijuana ("Weed is tight" — Jonah Hill). Peaks early, before there's a plot, successfully gambling on audience familiarity with performers anyone who's kept up with Hollywood studio comedies is by now long used to seeing in varying configurations. All do their best-established thing: Rogen is unflappable, Hill is monotonedly quick to respond, late entrant Danny McBride is unstoppably boorish (time to give this a rest imo), James Franco is simultaneously goofy and unreasonably prickly, Craig D. Robinson is the most endearing guy in the room. Anti-social outlier Michael Cera must be the first to go (America hates his modest, decidedly anomalous pseudo-meekness), while on the friendship/career outskirts Jay Baruchel fumes (he'll smoke weed but avoids alcohol, sticking to cigarettes and soft drinks, a distinct set of choices I assume has to be 100% true). Good bits throughout, but Rogen/Goldberg simply aren't as good at upping the stakes as they seem to think, and mining the Book of Revelations for comedy doesn't accomplish much. Kind of tiresome, too, that the frame of reference is so limited — Backstreet Boys? "My Heart Will Go On"? — but their immersion in only a specific strain of Hollywood trash does have its payoffs; movies like Prince of Persia exist only to become punchlines in comedies like this one.