Sunday, July 7, 2013

Fun Sponge Cinema: This Is 40

Once upon a time, Judd Apatow made entertaining movies.  Sure, they go on too long but The Cable Guy (underrated!), Anchorman, The 40 Year Old Virgin, Knocked Up, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Step Brothers and Pineapple Express among others are uniformly funny, well cast, frugally yet handsomely produced good times.  At some point, like the Farrelly Brothers, he started to get a little soft and audiences stopped caring.  Funny People, The Five Year Engagement and This Is 40 took on more realistic aspects of relationships and family and box office receipts dried up.  Why?  Because the fun had been sponged out and replaced by first world melodrama.

At least Funny People was a change of pace for Adam Sandler; the tale of a man seeking redemption and lost love in the face of possible death.  It had heart (thumps chest, Matthew McConaughey/Jean-Claude Van Damme style).  Five Year Engagement had it's fun moments as it surprisingly dealt with the conundrums of circumstance and opportunity and their sometimes negative effects on a growing relationship.

This Is 40, however, was just painful to watch.  Or rather, it was annoying to watch.  From Leslie Mann's high pitched bitching to making Paul Rudd boring (no small feat because he usually exudes weird/nice charm) to a plot that really goes nowhere and ends with, "we're all crazy and that's ok".  You couldn't have gotten to that in less than 2 hours?

The good times:

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