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Funny People

Updated on January 3, 2010

A Movie About Life And Regrets

"Funny People" is a film that will make you think, and maybe even cry. However, it's rarely as funny as you'd might think, from watching the trailers. Featuring such actors as Adam Sandler (George Simmons), Seth Rogen (Ira Wright), Leslie Mann (Laura), Eric Bana (Clarke), Jonah Hill (Leo Koenig), and Jason Schwartzman (Mark Taylor Jackson). The film essentially tells the story of a famous comedian, George Simmons, whom has endured fame through his stand up comedies and various films. However, despite all his success both financially and popularity, he's very miserable in his life as he has no one to share it with. Along the way, he meets a young aspiring comedian Ira Wright, whom agrees to become his new joke writer and personal assistant. The two men quickly form a friendship, as George finds out he has cancer. Thinking he's going to die soon, he tries to make amends with his family and ex-wife, Laura, before his time. However, when he hears he's not going to die, and his cancer is cured. Needless to say, George thinks of this as a second chance at life, as he tries to win back his ex-wife. The only problem, she's married to Clarke, whom happens to be a great guy, despite some infidelity issues. Plus, the fact that she has children, and George stinks with kids doesn't help much either. The film tends to be a bit depressing at times, yet the chemistry between Seth Rogen and Adam Sandler was great; as they're both portrayed as characters that seemed to be lost wondering about the direction of their lives. Just don't expect it to be funny, as this is more of a drama if anything. Sure, it has some comedic elements, but the jokes tend to wear thin after awhile; as they're all just different variations of the same jokes. "Funny People" is a fairly decent film for what it is, but I wouldn't see this if you're expecting to laugh; regardless of how it was promoted in trailers.

Adam Sandler gives probably the finest performance of his career. Yes, even over "Punch Drunk Love." Playing a self absorbed, neurotic, selfish, and moody kind of guy that holds many regrets in his life. Upon his near death experience, he comes to realize just how petty his life is, as he has nothing to show for it; outside his lucrative career. His family basically hates him for being such a jerk, as he's alienated them due to his success over the years.  He has no real friends to speak of, and the only lasting relationship he had was with his ex wife, Laura, whom he cheated on while they were married.  As it seems that his near fatal death experience, inspires George to win back his ex-wife.  However, what he does find when he tries to win her back, is a friendship that will forever change his outlook on life.  Adam Sandler does a great job conveying his character, giving him a sense of empathy, and deep sadness of a man that's frustrated with his life. 

Seth Rogen also gave a great performance in this film, as well.  Playing a man that is unsure of himself, and struggling to barely get by in life.  That is until he meets his childhood hero, George Simmons, and starts to work for him immediately.  What starts off as a chance to work for his hero, quickly turns into quite an adventure when he tries to act as the voice of reason for George.  Especially, when George tries to win back his ex-wife.  Indeed, the chemistry between Seth and Adam is amazing, and it'll keep audiences glued to the screen.

Sadly, the film does come off predictable at times, and the jokes tend to get tired and boring after a while; as each one is basically a different variation of the same sex jokes.  Seriously, how many times do you have to keep telling a different version of the same joke before you decide to write a new one?  At one point in the movie, it made me almost wish that Sandler had just done what Chris Rock does in all his films, and just recycle jokes from his real life acts into it instead. 

Although this film isn't a comedy as the trailers would have you believe, it's still a fairly decent movie for what it is.  Adam Sandler and Seth Rogen do a great job in this movie, as they both create a lot of chemistry on screen.  It's not the best film of the year, but it's worth a rental.


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