T: Netflix showcased this one in their ‘New Releases’ and I found myself immediately intrigued. As a devoted fan to South Park, I love animation garnered toward adult audiences. What really interested me about this one was its use of claymation – a medium only truly understood with the appreciation of my partner. With that said, its animation is all it really has going for it – that and Bob Odenkirk who I freaking love and to whom I would willingly give my kidney if need be. What amazes me is how a movie – littered with so many offensive jokes lacking any real humor – would attract the likes of Bob or Danny McBride or Mila Kunis or SUSAN SARANDON???? (Dammit, Janet – what the hell were you thinking?!) With that said, I do appreciate anyone willing to put in the painstaking work of claymation and for that they are deserving of some kudos. With that said, I won’t watch it again. There are a few intermittent laughs – predominantly from the Devil’s minions and the references to various “hellish” punishments – as far as I’m concerned, my hell would also include Taco Bell.
RV: I love claymation. I mean I anticipate every movie Ardman studio puts out (see: Shaun the Sheep) as if they were the biggest blockbusters out there. If I did a list of my favorite movies of all time, several claymations easily make that list (The Fantastic Mr. Fox, Wallace and Gromit, Chicken Run, Requiem for a Tuesday…), so to say that I’m a fan of the genre is an understatement. This being said, Hell and Back is the shittiest claymation I have ever watched. The moment T. suggested that we watch it; I was excited. It’s cover and description seemed so catchy that it had to be by the very least decent. Nope. It’s shitty. Besides that it’s not funny at all, it’s characters are all assholes that I don’t care about, and it’s plot is as thin as cellophane, the actual animation of the clay was handled quite terribly. I’ve seen claymation handled much better on even low budget television (See Community, or even Eureka). The characters and sets look dull, and the characters movements look awkward as fuck. To make up for all of these deficients in animation, they have to constantly utilize terrible CGI to make it even look passable.
1.5 Twizzlers: Hell and Back basically captures the experience of watching this movie.
1 Redvine: It’s a joke of a movie that failed to tell one joke.