"I Love You, Man"
Directed by John Hamburg.
Written by John Hamburg and Larry Levin.
Starring Paul Rudd, Jason Segel, and Rashida Jones.
Release Year: 2009
Review Date: 3/29/09
"I Love You, Man" is a great pre-summer
comedy; it's the movie I was hoping
"Forgetting Sarah Marshall" was going to be last year, until
that movie started and ended with me not laughing.
I think that's because of the great mix of
laughs for a slightly more adult audience, a better-than-average
script and a great mix of supporting bit players that diversify the
time spent watching Paul Rudd and Jason Segel (who starred in
"Marshall") not act. The story follows Peter (Rudd) as he
begins his engagement to Zooey (Rashida Jones); Peter has always
been great with the ladies and now he's found his life partner.
Zooey is a little worried about her man, though...you see, Peter has
never really had any male friends, so with wedding party planning in
its early stages, Peter and Zooey both decide it would be best if
Peter goes out to meet some men ASAP, so he goes on a series on
man-dates and man-encounters to get out to find some new buds.
Maybe it's just me, but it feels like "I
Love You, Man" is coming a few years late...the "bromance" idea or
anything involving a man's discomfort with meeting other men will
always make me laugh, but I feel like we were just rounding the
corner on this being a tabled discussion a ways back. Again, could
be me, but being able to tell other dudes I know how much I love 'em
isn't that out of the ordinary. Anyway, the film gets good
mileage out of its main plot, and then after Peter meets Sydney (Segel),
and the two embark on the man-romance that tries to establish a
friendship that both men value. To me, the better parts of the
movie were any time Peter acknowledged his situation, or whenever he
hangs out with his gay fitness-trainer brother (Andy Samberg), or
whenever Jon Favreau and Jaime Pressly appear as Zooey's
constantly-fighting couple friends. Some of the very, very
chatty script has good laughs around sex of all kinds, or some
reflective moments like when Sydney recognizes that all of his
friends seem to suddenly have lives and no time for him.
All of it is consistently good. I
laughed a lot, but I never blew a gasket; the very intentional line
reading and pedestrian editing and a bit of joke repetition (wait,
another scene where Peter tries to sound cool to Sydney by giving
him a silly nickname???) bring the product down for a movie fan but
probably will go unnoticed by 95% of "the people." I don't
know if this is a film that I will be suckered into when it's on
cable, like I do now if
"Superbad" is on Showtime every two weeks, but it was funny.
It's just not going to blow the roof off
like "Old School"
did. Manage your expectations and you'll be in for a great
time at the movies!!
Rating: $9.50 Show
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Bellview Rating System:
"Opening Weekend": This is
the highest rating a movie can receive. Reserved for movies that
exhibit the highest level of acting, plot, character development,
setting...or Salma Hayek. Not necessarily in that order.
"$X.XX Show": This price
changes each year due to the inflation of movie prices; currently,
it is the $9.50 Show. While not technically perfect, this is a
movie that will still entertain you at a very high level.
"Undercover Brother" falls into this category; it's no "Casablanca",
but you'll have a great time watching. The $9.50 Show won't win any
Oscars, but you'll be quoting lines from the thing for ages (see
"Matinee": An average movie
that merits no more than a $6.50 viewing at your local theater.
Seeing it for less than $9.50 will make you feel a lot better about
yourself. A movie like "Blue Crush" fits this category; you leave
the theater saying "That wasn't too bad...man, did you see that
Lakers game last night?"
"Rental": This rating
indicates a movie that you see in the previews and say to your
friend, "I'll be sure to miss that one." Mostly forgettable, you
couldn't lose too much by going to Hollywood Video and paying $3 to
watch it with your sig other, but you would only do that if the
video store was out of copies of "Ronin." If you can, see this
movie for free. This is what your TV Guide would give "one and a
"Hard Vice": This rating is
the bottom of the barrel. A movie that only six other human beings
have witnessed, this is the worst movie I have ever seen. A Shannon
Tweed "thriller," it is so bad as to be funny during almost every
one of its 84 minutes, and includes the worst ending ever put into a
movie. Marginally worse than "Cabin Boy", "The Avengers" or
"Leonard, Part 6", this rating means that you should avoid this
movie at all costs, or no costs, EVEN IF YOU CAN SEE IT FOR FREE!
(Warning: strong profanity will be used in all reviews of "Hard