Directed by Judd Apatow.
Written by Judd Apatow.
Starring Seth Rogen, Katherine Heigl, Leslie Mann and Paul Rudd.
Release Year: 2007
Review Date: 6/14/07
Using the same genius "random obscenity"
approach that worked to such glorious success with
40-Year Old Virgin", Judd Apatow has once again struck gold with
"Knocked Out" thanks to another mainly no-name cast paired with
hilarious bit characters.
What makes "Knocked Up" work better than
anything else is maybe the most violently profane pregnancy comedy
ever made; as a scriptwriter, Apatow's flow sometimes doesn't make
any sense...which is EXACTLY why the film works. Seth Rogen
stars as Ben, a 23-year-old Canadian living in LA with four other
guys while trying to start up a website that profiles when female
stars get naked onscreen. One night, he decides to roll out
with the boys to a local club, where E! television coordinator
Alison (Katherine Heigl) is out celebrating with her sister (Leslie
Mann) because Alison has just been promoted from behind-the-scenes
talent to on-camera talent...which is SO COOL! Ben and Alison
meet, have a couple of shots, have some unprotected sex, and
BAM--eight weeks later, Alison's got morning sickness, Ben's baby
and a world of complication to carry around, so rather than
completely bastardize the situation, she reaches out to Ben, and the
two begin an unlikely relationship that takes them all the way to
the due date.
As funny as the main plotline is, the film
is rounded out so beautifully by the side characters; Mann is great
as Alison's sister, as is Paul Rudd (who was also in "Virgin") as
the sister's husband. Ben's four roommates are all stellar;
the best of the bunch for me was clearly Jonah Hill, who is starring
in Apatow's upcoming high school comedy "Superbad"...he has maybe
(MAYBE) my favorite line of the movie:
"FUCK! My shit looked like a fucking
This line is representative of so much about
why I loved this movie; characters will randomly spout off much
unneeded cursing throughout the film's 130-minute running time, and
you don't even know why someone would say something that way, but
bingo, there they go again...if you haven't seen this, I know this
might seem vague, but if you HAVE seen "Knocked Up" you know exactly
what the fuck I'm fucking talking about. (Muthafucka.)
That, plus randomly insightful sex and drug talk (couldn't you see
other guys high-fiving when Ben is trying to explain to Alison that
it's not that doggie style is bad, it's just a STYLE, man, it's not
meant to be offensive), and you have just great quotables throughout
Apatow gets to preach a little bit about
safe sex (unless you like knocking up random women at clubs) without
sounding preachy; he gets away with the main storyline while giving
us an ending that is slightly predictable, but not in a bad way.
Heigl and Rogen really do make a team that doesn't make sense on
paper but believably get to that nice comfort level with time and a
little humor, not smoke and mirrors. The right people in each
main character's life seem genuinely disapproving of the behavior,
so at least that portion is not played for laughs, either.
Even the use of cameos is great here; the Seacrest bit was great
thanks to him just cursing for 60 seconds with no discernible
"Knocked Up" was great; just a tad below
"The 40-Year-Old Virgin" in my book because the side characters were
just a little better, but otherwise, great stuff. I might even
pay to see this one again.
Rating: Opening Weekend
Comments? Drop me a line at
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