Friday, March 20, 2009

"I Love You, Man" (2009) - Movie Review

Is it like a gold mine discovered by the clan of Apatow in finding the genre of seasoning of tune forking the bond between two straight men? Looks like it because the genre is hitting it right on target every time. While Apatow has nothing to do with this film, his fraternity buddies Paul Rudd and Jason Segel add their flavour to make “I Love You, Man” not only a great comedy but also a tender seriousness very much the blood and soul to its story. Paul Rudd comes off as the coolest guy ever in all the films he has been in and it is hard to believe to see his Peter Klaven in this film to have no male friends. But soon enough we understand the zero chemistry he has with his fellow men and despite his coolness in giving comic lines, his character is a man of random words.

There was a reference from a reviewer I cannot remember for “Knocked Up” saying to have the front men characters played by Paul Rudd and Seth Rogen in that film to get a room to be irritated by them. I found it odd of the reviewer because there is no men in the world who would not have empathized with those characters. And for once there is a genre for men, straight and gay. How better can it get? The talent which goes unrecognized in these comedy flicks is their finesse in following a formula and still coming out creative and artful as it can be. That surprises me every single time.

Our man Peter Klaven just got engaged to Zooey (Rashida Jones) and the series of events of his depravity in having male friends puts him to the hunt for a best man. The opportunity to make it the crudest and most exploitative scenario goes smooth, funny and feel sympathetic towards Peter. He is getting set up for “man”date by his mom (Jane Kurtin), his gay brother (Andy Samberg) and his fiance which goes unsuccessful. He has a great time with his mom’s choice Doug (Thomas Lennon) only to be french kissed in the end. His brother sets up his gym colleague Lonnie (Joe Lo Trugillo) who is up all over Peter’s face and has an odd high pitched annoying voice. His fiance’s friend Denise (Jamie Pressly) tries to make her jerk of a husband Barry (Jon Favreau) to hang out with Peter. That turns out to be the worst when a drinking challenge drains Barry with Peter’s puke.

Peter a realtor arranges an open house for the “Hulk” man Lou Ferrigno’s house where he bumps into Jason Segel’s Sidney Fife. He is the most laid back character you could find but still alive and kicking in his cool sort of way. He is honest and says his real venture into this posh house is to get free food and pick up single divorced women. He calls on immaculately on a client of Peter’s who precisely times his art of fart. Peter is impressed and one thing leads to another, they begin to hang out with each other.

Peter has no problem in gelling with the women around. He feels home out there and never panics a heart beat. And the initial conversations he tries to strike with men and then with Sidney is not only funny but you can feel the awkwardness in a way how one would associate with a regular schmuck who goes speechless with women. Here he blabbers continuously. Ends every conversation trying to come up with something cool and blurts not only the most uncool thing ever but makes no sense whatsoever in it

Soon he begins to venture out a ride he seem to have missed out in his life. He jams up music session and drools over each other in a concert of their favourite band “Rush” while Peter pretty much ignores Zooey. The whole nine yards of that wave is nothing to be newly encountered but the Rudd and Segel combination is intense and is hysterically funny.

Segel’s Sidney is not only easy going but brings the best and unseen character in Peter. He makes Peter loosen up and also draws a rule very much open and acknowledging of the bond they have. We have seen this in “Superbad”, “Knocked Up” and traces in “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” and here it is clear and open on the table of taking the whole perspective of male friendship with a great affection. Comedy films are also tough to review as it is easy to lose yourself and forget about putting the judgmental hat. You lose opinions and have fun completely. While deep drama and emotional films have their feat of their own, comedy films makes you care less and irresponsible for that time. “I Love You, Man” does that and at the same time live the characters to like and care for them. That makes this the first funniest film for the year and it is purely entertaining.

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