This 'Salmon' deserves a slammin'

In "The Slammin' Salmon," Michael Clarke Duncan plays a former heavyweight champion who terrorizesthe waitstaff of his Miami restaurant. The comedy comes from the ensemble behind "Supertroopers."
In "The Slammin' Salmon," Michael Clarke Duncan plays a former heavyweight champion who terrorizesthe waitstaff of his Miami restaurant. The comedy comes from the ensemble behind "Supertroopers."
Posted: December 11, 2009

You would think any movie with the word "salmon" in the title would have to be funny. Think again.

The Slammin' Salmon is one crazily cringe-worthy kettle of fish. The latest (and most feeble) project from the Broken Lizard comedy co-op (Supertroopers) in New York is like an elaborate and endless practical joke played on the audience.

The movie title is ostensibly the ring name of a former heavyweight boxing champion (Michael Clarke Duncan). It's also the name of his upscale seafood restaurant in Miami.

The champ is a malaprop-spouting monster who terrorizes his misfit waitstaff. Among the scallop slingers you have the failed actor (Steve Lemme), the accident-prone flirter (April Bowlby), and the lithium-don't-fail-me-now schizoid (Jay Chandrasekhar).

There is so little to the plot that it would be cruel to give much of anything away. Let's just say the chowderheaded food-servers get in a frenzied competition one night to generate the biggest checks.

That wan scenario is the conduit for a brackish tide of smut, slapstick, and gross-out humor. Was there even a script? The film is so adrift, it appears to be improvised.

And the portions are so small. The Slammin' Salmon has such uninspired performances, it makes Cobie Smulders, the weak link on TV's How I Met Your Mother, seem like Lucille Ball in her role as one of the waitresses.

Even a host of cameos (Jim Gaffigan, Lance Henriksen, Will Forte, Heroes' Sendhil Ramamurthy) can't enliven this slop.

The entire enterprise seems hopelessly dated (Morgan Fairchild jokes?), familiar (Heimlich maneuver gags?), and fatuous. It's an empty idea stretched out painfully, an incredibly thin and unpromising premise that veers further and further into the grotesque and idiotic.

Don't order the Salmon.


Contact staff writer David Hiltbrand

at 215-854-4552 or dhiltbrand@phillynews.com. Read

his recent work at http:// go.philly.com/daveondemand

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