Thursday, April 24, 2008

Forgetting Sarah Marshall

I can pretty much take or leave the over hyped, overrated, self-important genre of flicks known as "the Apatow" movies. He pretty much does the same jokes with the same actors,just slightly shifted around; instead of the stoner laying on the couch growing facial hair, he becomes a surf instructor...but the jokes are the same at the root. Same with the rampant sex jokes, the crudity, the "I use profanity and that is the joke" line, and it being theoretically funnier because he is doing it with a young group of actors.

The irony here is nowhere in the entire list of credits do you find the name Apatow yet I remember it being marketed as being "by the people who brought you..." and a list of his films, as well as by the presence of a number of Apatow regulars such as Seth Rogen.

Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008) tells the familiar story of a break-up where one member does not see it coming yet it turns out the other partner has been mistreating them, cheating on them, etc. for over a year. Sarah (Kristen Bell) is having fun with Aldous Snow (Russell Brand) while Peter Bretter (Jason Segel) pines for her.

After the break-up he engages in self-destructive behavior that revolves around trying to forget her by nailing as many girls as he can and whining about how bad his lot is. Unfortunately, this section of the flick is so deep in angst and self-pity that it forgets to be funny and Peter comes across as a complete and total loser.

Eventually he allows himself to be convinced to go to Hawaii as a cathartic attempt. Of course, that is where Sarah and Aldous are cavorting which leads to a lot of encounters.

With the great reasoning that "it is in the script", That '70s Show hottie Rachel Jansen (Mila Kunis) takes an interest in him. She comps him into the most expensive suite in the hotel. She goes on dates with him.

This leads Sarah to realize she is not over Peter. Unfortunately, little hilarity ensues.

That is not to say there are not laughs in the movie. There are laughs scattered throughout. It is just that so many are the "embarrassed" laugh instead of the "oh, that was really funny" laugh.

In the expected fashion Peter and Rachel hook up, Sarah gets dumped, and away we go. Along the way we are subjected to the most juvenile trip yet. The number of laughs is not disappointing but the intelligence of them is. If you like profanity as comedy and sex jokes, this flick is for you. If you don't like that but enjoy watching Mila Kunis and/or have seen Kristen Bell in a bikini and think that is a good look for her (rhetorical statement there...she is very easy on the eyes) then even if the weak story, stupid jokes, and repetitiveness of the movie bore you, you can still find entertainment here.

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