Celebrity Cameos Spark “Trainwreck”
By Skip Sheffield
Amy Schumer is not shy. She is not modest or delicate either. She is kind of like one of the guys in “Trainwreck;” a film in which she stars and wrote the script.
“Trainwreck” is like an exaggerated version of Amy Schumer the brash and blunt stand-up comedian. The story begins with a flashback to when Amy was a child (Devin Farbry as a 9-year-old Amy). Her dad (Colin Quinn) is not exactly a model father. He drinks too much and messes around. “Monogamy is not realistic,” he lectures little Amy. The grownup Amy has taken this to heart. Amy sleeps with whomever whenever she wants- as long as they don’t stay overnight. She is a writer for a snarky New York magazine called S’Nuff, as in that’s enough. Her bitchy British boss (Tilda Swinton at her bitchiest) has given her an assignment she does not want: interview celebrity sports surgeon Dr. Aaron Conners (Bill Hader). “Sports are stupid,” Amy sniffs. Nevertheless Amy interviews Dr. Conners, and immediately they click. The role of Dr. Conners allowed Amy Schumer the writer to invite every celebrity sports star she knew to play themselves. For instance basketball star LeBron James plays himself as Dr. Conners’ patient and good friend. James is surprisingly good, and he delivers some funny lines about the Miami Heat and his defection to Cleveland. “Trainwreck” is like a Mad magazine of cameos. My favorite is a movie-within-a-movie called “The Dogwalker,” starring Daniel Radcliffe, with Marisa Tomei as one of his clients. Amy also called fellow comedians to play small roles. These include Jim Florentine, Bobby Kelly and Dave Attell. The small part of an elderly gentleman named Norman is veteran stage and screen actor Norman Lloyd, who turns age 101 on Nov. 8. Wrestling star John Sena has an amusing speaking role as Amy’s muscle-bound boyfriend Steven. Playing themselves are actor Matthew Broderick, tennis legend Chris Lloyd and sports announcer Marv Alpert. Schumer even has a celebrity director: Judd Apatow directing the first film he did not write. As for the romantic story line between Schumer and Hader, it is the least effective part of “Trainwreck.” Go for the laughs and leave it at that.