Monday, June 04, 2007

Getting Knocked Up Over The Weekend - Movie Review

First, let me get this out of the way. For a TV fan, this movie is fricken fantabulous for its casting of TV actors galore. From the maker of Freaks and Geeks and Undeclared Judd Apatow, it seemed that at least half the alums had a role including How I Met Your Mother's Jason Segel, Jay Baruchel, Martin Starr and a cameo as movie star himself, James Franco. We got Growing Pains Mrs. Seaver's Joanna Kerns, Firefly's Alan Tudyk, The Office's B.J. Novak, perennial TV guest star Adam Scott, a cameo from The Office star and Knocked Up predecessor The 40 Year Old Virgin breakthrough star Steve Carrell, and then of course, the two main leads, Seth Rogen (Undeclared) and Katherine Heigl (that little show called Grey's Anatomy but also Roswell).

Knocked Up as everyone knows by now, or can figure out by the title, is when pretty girl Allison (a terrific Katherine Heigl cementing herself as more than just a pretty face on a hit TV show and reminding us that it is only Izzie the character that has become annoying and not the actress) becomes pregnant after a drunken one night stand with pot-smoking Canadian schlub Ben Stone (Seth Rogen, essentially playing himself, full Vancouver backstory included). The concept is simple. The promos make it look like an idiotic college humour movie. The cast and crew and writing really make it an honest serious look at life changes that just happens to have a lot of dirty words and dirty humour, but never a dirty heart. A feel good pregnancy film you could say. In fact, it's even more heartwarming than The 40 Year Old Virgin, but it never feels fake or hammy or forced down your throat and as many other reviewers have stated, its all well deserved and earned sentimentality. In fact, this Hollywood mainstream film felt more like an indie movie with jokes but without the dampness.

The cast is fantastic as I stated before, and add to that, Leslie Mann as Alison's sister and (the always reliable and versatile) Paul Rudd as Mann's slightly disappointing husband, the movie is strangely fully well rounded with some uncomfortable humour all due to the fact that it's all so real (which of course, makes it all the funnier). Knocked Up might not become as big of a hit as Virgin because the laughs are less broad and not belly-aching laughs (much like in Undeclared or The Office), but they hit genuine funny truths about life and what our choices determine how our lives end up. It's about learning to grow up, learning to love, learning how relationships work or don't work, and dealing with our mistakes we made, and trying to make it work for the better. Seriously, quite a wonderful film, masturbation jokes included.

Knocked Up = A- or 9/10

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