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Review: Neighbors

Updated on May 20, 2014

Back in the late 90's and early 2000's the Judd Apatow group were developing television shows that were well liked, but widely underappreciated. In 2004, that group broke onto the scene with "40 Year Old Virgin." The writers, directors and actors all began to have their own success in making some very funny films. That trend continues with "Neighbors" as Nicholas Stoller comes along to direct with long time friend Seth Rogen in the starring role. It is always great seeing these people work together because they all work so well. It is obvious that the comedy will be a bit abrasive to some, but that is the name of the game when it comes to their humor. You will get profanity, sexual humor and the whole lot but that is what has made them so popular.

The plot mostly follows Mac (Seth Rogen) and Kelly (Rose Byrne) Radner who are newly parents and questioning whether or not they will make good parents. Not just that but they are struggling with it on top of still having a social life. However, the care of the baby always takes the cake above all else. The two are excited to see who may be moving into the empty house next to them, but when they see it is a frat house that moves in, they immediately become concerned about how the noise level will disturb their own sleep as well as the baby. To try to cool the air, Mac and Kelly head over to welcome their new neighbors to the neighborhood by being friendly while also asking them to keep it down. Frat president Teddy (Zac Efron) assures them that if they are ever to loud then to give him a call and he will tell them to turn it down. He also makes them promise that they will never call the cops on him.

Of course, to no surprise, things get loud at their first party on their first night. Mac and Kelly walk over and tell Teddy to turn it down, which they do. Teddy and his vice president, Pete (Dave Franco), invite the couple in to help things between the neighbors. Teddy and Mac bond while Kelly has a good time with the girls at the party. Teddy thanks them the following day for being so cool about the noise and that he really appreciates that they do not break the promise. The following night, Teddy's party is again once to loud. Mac continues to call Teddy who does not pick up his phone thus Kelly decides to call the cops leaving an anonymous call. However, thanks to caller ID the cop that comes out identifies the Radner's as the callers. This of course upsets Teddy who feels like Mac and Kelly had violated their trust and friendship. He vows to make life a living hell for the Radner's.

4 stars out of 5
4 stars out of 5

Closing Comments

This is easily the funniest movie yet this year. Nicholas Stoller directed my favorite comedy a few years back in Forgetting Sarah Marshall, and now this film is up there in that top comedy conversation. There are plenty of quality laughs as well as memorable scenes. Something also has to be said about how when Seth Rogen received the script he became angry about how his in film wife was written as a nagging and annoying character. Thankfully that cliché was changed as Rose Byrne's character was a major one who proved that she could hold her own as a starring role in a comedy but also her character was one of the more likable ones in the film. Rogen of course shines in the film but something truly has to be said about the performance given by Zac Efron in the role of Teddy. I have never seen Efron act up until now and he played the role perfectly and was a good foil to Rogen's character. The fact that Efron's Teddy most likely could have grown up to become Rogen's Mac was a nice plot point and the reason for Teddy's desire to make life a living hell for the Radner's. Dave Franco also was the center of plenty great scenes, especially with Efron. The two played off of each really well delivering plenty of laughs. All in all, it was a good time and anyone that enjoys a good laugh should go see the film.


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