The Clapper

Movie review by
Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media
The Clapper Movie Poster Image
Quirky, Hollywood-set romcom has charm, language.
  • R
  • 2018
  • 89 minutes

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Kids say

age 12+
Based on 1 review

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Examines issue of meddling in people's private lives through media for entertainment purposes, but also feeds into that very idea. So even though it could spark discussion, the movie doesn't have much to say directly.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The characters are good people, but they're quirky and unrealistic and they make plenty of mistakes -- some of them very avoidable -- before they find their reward.

Violence

A nail is accidentally hammered through someone's hand. Some blood. Yelling, ranting. Arguing. Brief threats. Mention of wife's death. Reference to being a stalker.

Sex

Kissing. Sexual references ("porn star," "doggy style," "masturbating," etc.). Flirting.

Language

Several uses of "f--k," plus "s--t," "a--hole," "ass," "crap," "damn," and "idiot," plus a middle finger gesture.

Consumerism

Characters frequently drink Coca-Cola from paper cups with the logo shown. Mobil gas station, Google search engine, Samsung logo. Mentions of Ralph's and Chuck E. Cheese.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Clapper is a romantic comedy starring Ed Helms about quirky people who work in the lower depths of Hollywood; the main character is a professional audience member on TV shows that sell dubious goods and services. Language is the biggest issue; there are several uses of "f--k," as well as "s--t," "a--hole," and more. There are also verbal sexual references ("doggy style," "masturbating," etc.), kissing, and flirting. A man accidentally hammers a nail through his hand, with some blood shown; otherwise, violence is limited to arguing, yelling, ranting, and a few threats. There are mentions of a man's wife dying and of a stalker. Name brands are shown and/or mentioned pretty regularly, including Coca-Cola, Google, Samsung, and Chuck E. Cheese.

User Reviews

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Teen, 13 years old Written bykaliweb May 13, 2018

A Little Monotonous, Yet Fresh

This movie is a tid bit boring but it’s definitely a new theme with a satisfying ending. Watch it if you’re in the mood to giggle and relax, there isn’t much to... Continue reading

What's the story?

In THE CLAPPER, Eddie Krumble (Ed Helms) and his best friend, Chris (Tracy Morgan), work as professional audience members in Hollywood. Together -- while wearing a range of disguises so that they won't get recognized -- they cheer for dubious products and services on sleazy daytime infomercial shows. Eddie buys a few dollars of gas every day as an excuse to visit with pretty clerk Judy (Amanda Seyfried). One day, talk show host Jayme Stillerman (Russell Peters) identifies Eddie -- despite his various costumes -- and broadcasts his face on TV, so Eddie loses his job. But he also becomes a kind of mini-celebrity; that, plus a misunderstanding, leads to him losing track of Judy. He doesn't know her last name, her phone number, or where she lives. So Eddie reluctantly agrees to go on Stillerman's show to try to find her and win her back, although this decision is fraught with its own new kinds of peril.

Is it any good?

Though it's not exactly brilliant, this indie romcom is passably charming, and it finds offbeat atmosphere in an uncharted corner of Hollywood: scuzzy places where the glamorous would fear to tread. Writer/director Dito Montiel usually makes clumsily heavy-handed dramas, so it's a surprise to see him managing a comedy like The Clapper (based on his own 2007 novel Eddie Krumble Is the Clapper). He doesn't dig very deep into this world of "clapping," but for those who didn't even know it existed, it's at least a novelty.

Montiel also doesn't pry very deep into his characters. Eddie is such an oddball that it's hard to believe Judy could fall for him. But the two actors bring such a warm charm to their roles that they pull it off. Morgan is also more than a little wonderful as the slightly dim Chris, who stands by Eddie through thick and thin. The movie is fairly wise about the world of marginal celebrity, and the whole thing is somewhat plausible. But the best thing in The Clapper is its world, a weird underbelly of Hollywood consisting of cheap TV studios, gas stations, fast-food joints ("nobody sits inside"), and street-corner superheroes; it's hard to look away.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about The Clapper's violence. Did any moments or scenes make you feel tense? Why? Were they verbal or physical? Were they funny?

  • Is Jayme Stillerman a bully? How does he treat Eddie? How does Eddie handle him?

  • How is the movie's central romantic relationship handled? Is it respectful? Plausible? Does sex enter into it?

  • The movie has references to being a stalker. What does that mean? How is it defined?

Movie details

For kids who love comedies

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