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August 20, 2007

Non-Review: Superbad

Superbad has had huge insider buzz and has been widely predicted to be a huge hit despite the fact its director and cast are all but unknown. (Yes, it has George Michael from Arrested Development, the loser dude from Knocked Up, and Vincent Price from Saturday Night Live, but they're not huge stars... yet. Judd Apatow's name is always mentioned, but he's the producer, not the director.)

So, is the buzz on what seems like such a small movie justified? Yup. The insiders weren't just jerking you around. I saw this Saturday night and wanted to mention it, in case it takes me a week to write one of my six billion word reviews.

It's funny all the way through, with lots of big laughs along the way, and smiles and giggles even in its other parts. It earns every bit of its R rating, mostly through faithfully capturing what high school boys talk about (chiefly "vaigzsh," and various other corruptions of vagina, along with calling each other faggot and such). There are three obligatory gross-out bits, but two are so brief that they feel obligatory, a nod to what's expected in this sort of movie. The third is the raunchiest and most detailed, but it's so funny and inspired it justifies itself. (Also: it only involves doodles on a notepad. Some seriously funny (and R rated) doodles.)

The commercials for it are okay, but don't really show off the film's funniest bits, which is welcome -- they've only given away a smallish number of jokes, so watching the movie, for once, isn't just waiting for the funny bites you've already seen in the ads. One bit that seemed pretty dumb in the commercials -- the fake ID with the unlikely name "McLovin" (just "McLovin," like Prince or Madonna) -- actually turned out to have a whole lot more potential than I thought. After the movie I began rating stuff according to how "McLovin" it was (meaning how totally kickass and superbad it was).

Three and a half stars, easily the funniest comedy since the last truly funny comedy. Which I guess would be Wedding Crashers or the Will Ferrel race car movie. A constant stream of vulgarity and bad behavior, but nothing that will put you off if you're reading this site.


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posted by Ace at 12:35 PM

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