THE INTERNSHIP Movie Review Stars Owen Wilson, Vince Vaughn, and Google

Full disclosure:  I hate spoilers in reviews, so there won’t be any in THE INTERNSHIP movie review.  The film is rated PG-13, but take that with a grain of salt.  There are some very explicit scenes that I wouldn’t have wanted to watch with my parents or watch with my young teen-aged children.  It is hilarious, though, with many laugh-out-loud moments.  So while this may not be the typical “Adventures by Daddy” family-friendly film, if you get a babysitter, are considering a date night, or parent’s night out, this may be an option for you.  Continue reading for the full review.


THE INTERNSHIP stars Owen Wilson (left) and Vince Vaughn (right) as salesmen whose careers have been torpedoed by the digital world. Trying to prove they are not obsolete, they defy the odds by talking their way into a coveted internship at Google, along with a battalion of brilliant college students.


“Do You Even Know What It’s Like to Be 21 Now?”

The few trailers I saw for this film made me suspect that this movie would be The Wedding Crashers set at Google.   I imagined that Vince Vaughn’s and Owen Wilson’s characters had somehow scammed their way into a college internship program at Google and that hijinks would ensue with plenty of Google jokes and ageist references.  With Vince and Owen in the lead roles, I was pretty sure it would be funny.  Read along and find out just how right – and how wrong – I was.


The movie opens with sales partners Billy (Vince Vaughn) and Nick (Owen Wilson) heading to a sales meeting, getting themselves psyched up with a little Alanis Morrissette (with the not-so-obvious “Ironic” – which is really about Murphy’s Law, but that’s another topic), and in the course of that meeting, setting the scene for their transition to Google.

THE INTERNSHIP follows Billy and Nick as they work their way through the Google internship program.  They’re nearly old enough to be the parents of the rest of the internship group, which gives them distance from the others and adds a paternal element to their roles.  The rest of the Noogles (could that really be what new Google employees are called?) condescend to these dinosaurs from the analog age, some even to the point of bullying.  The Noogles are split into teams, which then compete against each other in a series of challenges, designed to bring out the “Googliness” of the interns.  The team which wins the internship challenge series gets hired by Google.  Each challenge gives our team of Noogles opportunities to reveal more about themselves and who they are with Billy and Nick along to guide them and to learn from them.  Our Noogles are, of course, the misfits, because what other team could Billy and Nick end up with?  It’s our very own Breakfast Club (a nod to the many 80s references in the film) with the modern-day nerdy equivalent of the student cross-section.


Nick (Owen Wilson) and Billy (Vince Vaughn) ponder one of the many puzzles during their internship at Google.


One of the main characters of the film is Google itself.  As much as this is a comedy set in the Google campus, it’s also a really long commercial selling viewers on the appeal of working at Google, showing us the delights of the campus, including cool cultural icons, free food, free athletic equipment, including bicycles for getting around campus, nap pods, and showcasing Google products.  We learn just how hard Google works to ensure it hires only the best of the best, who score big in all of the skills and talents that Google customers should want in their information provider.  Google is one big happy family and they keep it that way by whittling through job applicants to ensure they fit the family and can not only ensure that Google continues, but also grows and improves.


I mentioned in the first paragraph that there was an explicit scene.  I recognize that the scene was a plot device, necessary to moving the story forward in a particular direction, but this scene could have accomplished its purpose in a regular bar or nightclub, instead of the strip club.  The sexual innuendos and carefully orchestrated violence (and, admittedly, one of the funniest lines in the film, which I won’t reveal, because it has to be experienced to be truly hilarious) were over the top and one, in particular, could have been left out without anyone noticing it missing.  The same could be said for the romantic bit, which fell flat, but was so minor it didn’t really disturb my overall enjoyment of the movie.


Google interns Yo-Yo (Tobit Raphael), Stuart (Dylan O'€™Brien), Lyle (Josh Brener), Marielena (Jessica Szohr), Billy (Vince Vaughn), and Nick (Owen Wilson) bond at a strip club.


The credits played out as if they were set in (and probably were) Google products, including Gmail, Google+, YouTube, and my personal favorite, a playable guitar Google doodle for the music credit.  The final screen told us that the film created over 13,000 jobs and hundreds of thousands of work hours to complete.

The cast is excellent.  From Vince and Owen in the lead roles, through the relative newcomers in the supporting cast and, especially, the cameo appearances (John Goodman, Will Ferrell, B.J. Novak, Josh Gad, etc.), the acting is spot on.  Of course, Vince and Owen have those roles down to a T, from long practice, but it didn’t get old and they didn’t seem jaded.  The kids who make up the primary supporting cast (Josh Brenner, Max Minghella, Dylan O’Brien, Tobit Raphael and Tiya Sircar) are all relative newcomers, but hold their own against Vince and Owen.  Of the two adults in the secondary supporting cast, I think Aasif Mandvi has the stronger performance as Mr. Chetty, the leader of the Google internship program, than Rose Byrne’s Dana, the Google executive who catches Nick’s eye.


THE INTERNSHIP is not what I would call family friendly.  It has a PG-13 rating and for most of the movie (it’s fairly formulaic along the screwball comedy line), I’d be fine watching it with teenagers, but that scene in the strip club, especially one particularly vulgar sequence (juvenile humor at its finest – or should that be lowest), would make me uncomfortable in the company of younger teens and I can’t imagine a teenager wanting to watch that scene with his or her parents.  This film seems most appropriate for adults, as in over 18, not over 13.  Sex and violence aside, the movie is very funny, garnering many big laughs from the audience, with physical comedy, funny cultural references, and sight gags.  If the purpose of this film was to entice people to work at Google, I’m sold (except for the Noogle thing)!

What do you think?  Are you looking forward to seeing THE INTERNSHIP, or have you seen it already?  Please leave your thoughts in the comments below.  For more family-friendly entertainment news, be sure to follow Adventures by Daddy on twitter and “like” our facebook page too.

About George Gensler

George Gensler is a copyrights specialist during the week and a runner on the weekends. She lives in New York City now, but has lived in five countries on three continents. She grew up traveling the world, but her official residence was in Southern California and every visit home included a trip to Disneyland. She has also visited every Disney Park around the world and sailed on board two Disney cruises. She threw in a visit to the Disney Family museum in San Francisco for good measure, and has had the Premier Disney Park Pass since its inception.