Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Is Fun Over at 40?


Unflattering “This is 40”

By Skip Sheffield

“This is 40” paints a very unflattering picture of that milestone.
This is a Judd Apatow production, written and directed by the creator of the raunchy comedies “40 Year Old Virgin,” “Knocked Up,” “The Legend of Ron Burgundy” and television’s “The Larry Sanders Show.” Apatow does not have a delicate sense of humor.
“I like filth,” he has been quoted as saying.
“This is 40” takes place a few years after the characters Pete (Paul Rudd) and Debbie (Leslie Mann) appeared as a young married couple in “Knocked Up.”
Lovely Leslie Mann is Judd Apatow’s wife. Obviously she understands her husband’s caustic sense of humor. She is a very good sport too, because Debbie does not relish the prospect of hitting 40, and much of the humor comes from her insecurity and humiliation.
Pete has already hit the big 4-0, and his sentiment is quite clear: “(bleep) forty.”
There are some good things about “This is 40.” Pete is a fan of British singer-songwriter Graham Party, who plays himself in the film. Pete wants to promote a Parker comeback tour in America. It is for this reason Pete’s record label is in financial trouble. Even Parker doubts his box office potential.
Another good thing about “40” is Albert Brooks as Pete’s dad, who reassures his son the years 40 to 60 are the best of a guy’s life. Yet another is John Lithgow as Debbie’s dad and luscious Megan Fox as her coworker.
And so it goes. Jason Segal makes a cameo appearance as Pete’s buddy Jason from “Knocked Up” and Apatow’s friend and collaborator. The movie just sort of mills around until the inevitable 40th birthday party. Why it takes 134 minutes to get to this point is a bit of a mystery.

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