MOVIE REVIEW: SUPERBAD
My God, can Judd Apatow do anything wrong? Everything this guy touches is instant comedy gold. He scored back-to-back brilliance with The 40 Year Old Virgin and Knocked Up which he wrote and directed, and now comes Superbad (114 min, Rated R) in which he serves as producer. Written by friends Seth Rogan & Evan Goldberg when they were 14 and directed by Greg Mottola (Arrested Development), it's technically not an Apatow film like Knocked Up, but you can still feel his guiding hand in every scene. The film is pure raunchy fun from start to finish and it never lets up.
Seth (Jonah Hill of Knocked Up) and Evan (Michael Cera of Arrested Development) are high school seniors with three weeks to go until graduation and they're itching for one sexual experience before they go to college. Up until now it's been nothing but hand jobs and (in Seth's case) "3/4 of a blowjob." Lo and behold there's a party going on and they've been entrusted to supply the booze that they hope will turn things into a scene straight out of Caligula. Should be an easy task to score the liquor since they know a guy with a freshly minted fake ID: Fogell (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), "The Anti-Poon". The problem is he's chosen a moniker of "McLovin" a 25 year-old Honolulu resident as his new identity. If they can get past that hurdle and find that one drunken sexual exploit that will lead them to a summer full of more sex before college starts, they can feel secure in knowing that they won't "suck dick at fucking pussy". Yes, it's that kind of movie.
It's easy to compare this film to every other r-rated "teens looking to get laid" movie to come along in the last 10 years, but while films like American Pie played heavy to the vulgarity, they failed to capture the true soul of teenage speech. Superbad not only captures the speech, it sticks it in a blender and whips it into a fucking frenzy. At that age my friends and I had to pepper every sentence with some variation of the word "fuck" and the characters here use it in just about every sentence that comes out of their mouths. The writing is sharp and the dialogue is spot on. There are so many great one-liners in this movie you almost have to watch it twice to catch them all.
The cast is put together brilliantly and they all do an incredible job in getting across the horny teenage vibe. Jonah Hill has found his break out role in Seth and Michael Cera is fantastic as Evan. Christopher Mintz-Plasse gives a hilarious performance as Fogell. That poor guy will never be able to walk down the street again without some asshole screaming "Hey McLovin! I have a boner!!!" Fans of Apatow's short lived TV series Freaks & Geeks and Undeclared will enjoy spotting a few of the series regulars in small roles throughout the film. Look for Undeclared star Carla Gallo as an unforgettable character named "Period Blood Girl". I will never look at her in the same way again when I watch my Undeclared DVD box set.
Set to a Lyle Workman soul/funk soundtrack featuring funk icons Catfish Collins, Bernie Worrell and Bootsie Collins, the movie hits every note perfectly and is destined to become one of those movies you'll hear people reciting lines from for years.