How do you ask nuisance neighbours to keep the noise down? Bad Neighbours is a comedy about the horror of other people’s high-decibel high spirits. But with a dud script in full cry and hyper-mugging from Seth Rogen, Rose Byrne and Zac Efron (trialling his comedy skills as a college fraternity president), the film is a mirror image of its own target. Rowdy, hectic, annoying; and close to inciting the audience’s own cries of: “Let’s call the cops, we’ve had enough.”
Rogen and Byrne ham away hardworkingly as the new parents trying to bring up baby as Efron and his Delta Psi Beta party animals move in next door. Once or twice the film coaxes a laugh. Lisa Kudrow has a brittle-funny cameo as a headline-obsessed Dean, desperate not to have her cubs bannered daily across the local rag. And there is a good car-airbag joke (thrice repeated). If you’ve seen the trailer, though, you’ve seen this and every other moment worth a smile or snicker.