From one of Saturday Night Live’s lamest recurring sketches comes one of its funniest spinoffs. MacGruber pushes beyond its roots as a MacGyver parody and blossoms into a magnificent goof on Rambo-spawn ’80s action blowouts.
Director Jorma Taccone, one of the trio who make SNL’s “Digital Shorts,” takes pastiche to the nth degree — there’s a big-cat snarl embedded in every explosion. Will Forte brings the silly as the man reputed to be a hero, though in fact he’s an idiot and a coward. Powers Boothe is the officer who brings MacGruber back from exile to recover a nuke stolen by Dieter Van Cunth (Val Kilmer). Living in a bubble where Toto blasts from his car stereo, the mulleted Mac pursues his nemesis aided by Vicki (Kristen Wiig, doe-eyed and lovesick) and Lieutenant Dixon (Ryan Phillippe, playing it straight).
Peppered with deliberately cringeworthy R-rated banter and boasting a hero eager to degrade himself, MacGruber is sick fun.