- Greg Mottola
- Reviewed by
- José Ruiloba a.k.a. Morris
- Review date
- Wednesday, October 17, 2007
Best pals Seth (Jonah Hill) and Evan (Michael Cera) enlist the help of fellow dork friend Fogell (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) to get alcohol for a pre-graduation party they’ve been invited by Jules (Emma Stone), whom Seth is planning on getting drunk and do the nasty with. While on the liquor store, Fogell witnesses a robbery and is taken by officers Slater (Bill Hader) and Michaels (Seth Rogen), with whom he gets involved in a series of misadventures. Meanwhile, underage Seth and Evan must find another way to get alcohol.
Greg Mottola directed from a script by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. His movie is being called the Porky’s or American Pie of this decade, and yeah, I can’t argue with that. The difference is that while Superbad is smarter and has better dialogue, both of the aforementioned movies are funnier. Heck, I could even name some movies from this year that are funnier. And no, I’m not grumpy or retarded, I did laugh at plenty of the stuff in here, especially during the first act, but it is far from being a great movie.
Its moderate success lies in the way Seth, Evan and Fogell interact. They are so different from each other yet you totally believe they can be best friends; and their rapport is hilarious. Unfortunately they are placed in situations which are hit-and-miss at best. The flick starts well enough, with good pace, clever bits and envelope-pushing dialogue. Then things get complicated and everything starts to go downhill. Also, the involvement of the cops was an unfortunate choice; they are not funny and almost sink the movie. A lot of their scenes could’ve been cut or shortened and it would’ve helped maintain the level of energy but also would’ve prevented the flick from feeling as overlong as it does. It started to get on my nerves after a while and I just wanted it to be over.
What the movie also does right is to portray horny teenagers just as they are. The situations they are placed in might be larger-than-life, but their personalities, behavior and relationships all ring honest. It is a spot-on depiction and that makes their initial interaction a hoot to watch.
Jonah Hill, Michael Cera and Christopher Mintz-Plasse are all good and funny and quirky in their own particular ways. Hill could’ve taken the shouting down a bit and I wouldn’t have minded; and Mintz-Plasse could’ve played it a bit straighter at times instead of going for a cartoony approach, but these are just minor quibbles. The only one that is simple perfection is Cera, who, for me, is the real find of the movie. His understated approach has a huge impact in every level: laughs, believability and originality, his is a one-of-a-kind character and he does an excellent job in bringing him to life. Seth Rogen and especially Bill Hader as the cops are completely out-of-synch, although the writing could be blamed for that as well.
“We could be that mistake!”
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