Recently TVO were graciously invited to a screening of This is 40 – featuring Chris O’Dowd – prior to it’s official release late this week.
The evening was a treat to say the least and here is Paulyne’s thoughts on the film as a whole.
After over five years Judd Apatow has brought back two beloved characters, Pete and Debbie (Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann) from his super-hit Knocked Up.
We all know very well that Apatow has a style that stands out from any modern day comedies, his writing is sharp and his jokes are disgusting but some of the most quoted today and we all love it. The bar was set pretty high with his brand of wit a long time ago and it would be a waste for anyone to even try and top it.
One thing I can say about This is 40 is that it did catch me off-guard. The writing was spot on and some of the blows of insults between characters are lines that I’ll be thinking about and giggling to myself about for a long time; however those were too few and far between.
With Pete and Debbie both turning 40 this would no doubt be in a completely different territory to Judd’s more immature protagonists, this warts and all depiction of life at 40 was more ‘everything awful that could happen the day after you turn 40’. If it wasn’t a scene of overdone, hormonal or unnecessary screaming that dragged on too long for my liking, it was more lying behind a partners back on top of lots of other secrets kept that makes you wonder how they’ve made it to 40 ever trusting each other in the first place (a hearty comedy no?)
One thing I did love was that the daughters Charlotte and Sadie, are actually Judd’s kids. They played the parts well, a little too well for my liking as they played one-is-hormonal and the-other-is-attention-seeking so well it brought back a stress I haven’t felt since I lived in my family home (the yelling, oh the yelling!)
The entire cinema experience wasn’t all doom and gloom however, if at any short period of time someone wasn’t angry at someone else (or they were keeping things civil) it allowed for some of Apatow’s light to shine through (a scene with an angry menopausal mother in her son’s Principal’s office left the entire audience still giggling scenes after!)
Of course I wouldn’t be writing about this film if it wasn’t for a cameo from a much-loved TVO name. Chris O’Dowd plays Ronnie, Pete’s employee at his music record label. A duo that I thought would never work as well as it did was O’Dowd and Jason Segal. With O’Dowd playing the bumbling awkward yet adorable Ronnie, and Segal as the overconfident personal trainer their scene together was pure class! (maybe the next spin-off, Judd?)
All in all, comedy was where the gold was and the concept is great but let’s not put a complete downer on all of our inevitable ageing.
We’d love to hear your own opinions on the film and I would encourage everyone to have a watch themselves! This is 40 is out on February 14th in the UK.