04 August 2009

Funny People

Written & Directed by: Judd Apatow
Full credits from IMDb

Apatow has to be one of the most inefficient storytellers in Hollywood, and it’s amazing that he gets away with it film after film. The 40 Year Old Virgin, Knocked Up and now this movie all suffer from the same problem: they go on way too long, self indulgently long, playing with drama with the sophistication of a sappy Lifetime movie. A lot of comedies (like, say, Wedding Crashers) have this plotting problem nowadays; the comedy doesn’t inform the story, it’s just a gloss that makes some trite romance or whatnot go down more easily—until the third act, when the filmmakers get mired down in humorlessly tying up the loose ends of the plot that no one cares about. “You come for the testoteriffic ambience,” Jessica Winter wrote a few years ago in the Voice, “and you stay for the chick flick.” The American Pie Effect. But we’re here to laugh, right? Not get wrapped up in the phony lives of 2-D characters?

Read my discussion with Benjamin Sutton at The L Magazine

Watch the trailer:

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