Let's be honest here: The last few films by comedy troupe Broken Lizard put them on a "Who the hell thought this would be funny? This is so painful to watch" streak.
To be fair, though, the boys set the bar really high by making their very first film, "Super Troopers," an original and endearing cult classic comedy. Following that film, Hollywood got a hold of them and cast more recognizable stars in their films to build more "credibility," but the laughs — something the troupe is obviously very good at — flatlined. Fart jokes and physical comedy can only go so far.
Now, that doesn't mean their new film, "The Babymakers," starring the highly underrated Paul Schneider and Olivia Munn, lacks the Three Stooges-esque pratfalls we've seen in their previous films. But this time around, the laughs are balanced with heart and charisma.
On the night of their three-year anniversary, young couple Audrey (Munn) and Tommy (Schneider) are discussing the next big step in their relationship: She wants to add a baby to their family, and he wants to add a new, and very painful, penetrating act to their sex life. Like any healthy couple, they negotiate. On this night, they try the one thing Tommy has been fantasizing about for the last three years, and then they begin the baby-making process. Fast forward to nine months later and they're still trying.
Something's wrong and, no thanks to Audrey, the whole town knows it: Tommy is sterile. After a few embarrassing reminders that he can't create a baby, Tommy remembers he donated a lot of good sperm years ago and used the money to buy Audrey an engagement ring. So he and his friends conceive a plan to break into that same sperm bank he donated to years ago and collect the last remaining vial of Tommy's healthy swimmers. "Operation Desert Sperm" begins.
One could argue that "The Babymakers" isn't a true Broken Lizard movie as we are missing some key pranksters (Steve Lemme, the most bonkers in the group, is the most noticeable MIA player), but it still feels like a Lizard collaboration. There's a running joke throughout the film that Tommy is probably sterile because, due to incredibly bad luck constantly tagging along with him, he's been consistently banged in the babymaker since he can remember. Most people avoid ingrown toenails or eating the yellow chewable in a Starburst pack — Tommy makes sure his balls don't face another Mike Tyson-themed knockout. Keeping with the physical humor, we do get sperm splatter (who expects to break into a sperm bank and not accidentally get covered in goo?), and for every mishap, there's another mishap to complement it.
"The Babymakers" is Broken Lizard getting some of their — excuse us — juice back, and this time around they've even balanced the laughs with a small but beating heart.