Until Death Do Us Part - Jonas

Jumaat, Mac 20, 2009

#305. Cinema : I Love You, Man

Comedy. Starring Paul Rudd, Jason Segel, Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg. Directed by John Hamburg. [R. 105 minutes]. The problem with the bromantic comedy genre - movies about relationships between straight men - is usually the women. Although "The 40-Year-Old Virgin" was funny throughout, the best parts involved Steve Carell's interactions with his character's male co-workers, not the love interest played by Catherine Keener.

"I Love You, Man" focuses on man love from beginning to end, making the fiancee secondary to the relationship between two new friends played by Paul Rudd and Jason Segel. It's a hilarious comedy made even more successful because so much of the satire seems fresh. Even the movie's obligatory vomit humor is written in a way that makes it feel like the first puke joke you've ever seen.

The setup sounds like a five-minute "Saturday Night Live" skit, or a doomed TV pilot. Rudd is Peter Klaven, who has no close guy friends. When his wife-to-be (Rashida Jones) frets that he'll be too clingy as a husband, Peter goes on a series of man dates, eventually meeting Sydney (Segel). Sydney is everything Peter isn't - slobbish and blunt and confrontational - but they still hit it off, eventually causing strife in other parts of Peter's life.

Director-writer John Hamburg could have played the relationship strictly for humor, and the movie would have been OK. But he's careful to make the chemistry between the leads as believable as any good conventional romance. Peter and Sydney are completely different, but each of their perceived shortcomings holds the key to making the other happy. Sydney needs Peter's willing friendship just as much as Peter needs Sydney's man cave. (Yes, there's a man cave. And just about everything involving this den of electric guitars, masturbation and big-screen televisions is pants-wetting funny.)

The supporting characters are equally inventive. Running jokes involving Peter's gay brother and accepting father and some dysfunctional married friends hit their marks in scene after scene. The movie also features comedic stabs at Lou Ferrigno, real estate agents and a tribute to the band Rush that is both funny and sincerely affectionate.

About the worst thing that can be said for "I Love You, Man" is that it's exclusionist. Like the movie "Swingers" or "Knocked Up," this film seems aimed for a specific age demographic - in this case the newly married or people who are heading down that road.

The movie also deserves some kind of award for the most deceptive trailers in a recent comedy. The commercials, including one that focuses almost entirely on the least funny Ferrigno scene, seem designed to make the film look mediocre.

Go ahead into the theater with low expectations. And then be surprised by one of the better comedies of the past year.

Source : sfGate

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