Viewed – 14 September 2010 Cinema
I wasn’t really planning on seeing this, but the movie I had gone to see had been cancelled due to a faulty print. So I am glad to report that this was a pleasant surprise. John C Reilly plays a bachelor still hung up on his ex-wife who meets a vivacious woman at a party (Marisa Tomei), and sparks fly, with them both soon ending up in bed together. Yet this woman has a 22 year old son called Cyrus, who John at first befriends. But it isn’t long until we discover that Cyrus has no intentions of allowing this man into his and his mother’s life, and plots to split them up.
Viewed – 29 November 2009 Blu-ray
Part of a wave of comedies recently that don’t seem to know if they want to be romantic or toilet humour crude, lurking in that middle ground that isn’t either. Knocked Up was such a film, and this is another, although with plenty to recommend it if you’re after something that will make you smile but not necessarily rolling on the floor laughing. Jason Segal plays TV music composer Peter who is dumped by his long term TV actress girlfriend (Kristen Bell) who leaves him to pick up the pieces. Helped by his brother-in-law from a previous break-up, Peter is advised to ‘get away from it all’ and goes to Hawaii. There predictably he bumps into his ex and her new lover, brit-comic Russell Brand, admittedly the main reason I had avoided this one like the plague. Simple set up leads to many comically awkward moments (stand out – the dinner scene) as sad, pathetic Peter is forced to cope with his break up and eventually falls for the kind-hearted receptionist who befriends him.
Surprisingly, Russell Brand makes for a very enjoyable actor and steals the show, which isn’t hard considering that Segal & Bell are phoning their performances in, with Bell walking around in less and less clothing, which I admit is certainly appealing, but after seeing her in Heroes, I was expecting more. Segal is a likable looser, and the receptionist does seem to bring some spark to the otherwise by-the-numbers storyline, yet any comedy seems too gentle or forced, cameos from Paul Rudd & Jonah Hill only go to show how much better this one could have been given a better script, and to make matters worse, this has to be one of the poorest examples of high definition I have yet seen.
So if you like your comedies tame, by all means give it a rental … otherwise, steer clear.
Verdict: 2 /5
Viewed – 10 February 2008 DVD
So here we have a concept that is as old as cinema itself – or at least as old as the eighties teen movie-boom. Two nerdy guys due to graduate high school (newcomers Michael Cera & Jonah Hill), pull out all the stops to score with those hot babes they’ve been eyeing up all year.
No this isn’t American Pie: The Divorce, but actually a rather well constructed and genuinely funny movie with two likable leads who after promising said hot chicks to get beer for upcoming party, become embroiled in countless adventures in their quest to get laid.
What helps this not just disappear under the weight of similar films, is its infectious energy and sheer fun factor, even if the often graphic language may put off some. This boarders on South Park sometimes for its (admittedly imaginative) swear-quota. Thankfully though it never spoils the film, and all the way through you are there, routing for these guys, right up to the rather slushy but also heart-warming ending.
Verdict: 3 /5