Thursday, December 20, 2012

This is 40

This is 40 is being billed as the "sort-of sequel to (2007's) Knocked Up," and so Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann reprise their roles as Pete and Debbie. However, you won't find Seth Rogen and Katherine Heigl here at all, though there are a few other recurring characters, such as Jason Segel, playing an athletic trainer aptly named Jason, and Charlyne Yi, playing an employee who works at Debbie's clothing store (and who is so weird she actually steals a few scenes). I remember I saw a screening of Knocked Up when I was attending U of M and thought it was funny, and This is 40 matches that, though it's definitely not a movie for kids because of its language and adult jokes.

Five years after Knocked Up, Pete and Debbie are turning 40, though Debbie insists on having "38" written on her cake. They're in some serious money troubles too, although Debbie doesn't even know the half of it; Pete's music studio isn't doing well, and he brings back one of his favorite "old fogies" and his band in a last-ditch attempt to make some money. Debbie has taken to smoking near windows in secret, and Pete eats too many cupcakes, so they decide to start a healthier lifestyle - which of course makes them miserable. Their oldest daughter, Sadie (Maude Apatow, real-life daughter of director Judd Apatow and Leslie Mann), is thirteen, too, and they're having a hard time dealing with her; their youngest daughter, Charlotte (Iris Apatow, sister of Maude), is hating that her sister and herself aren't close anymore, too. The movie follows these characters through their ups and downs, and brings a large dose of comedy with it.

During the opening scene of This is 40, you can tell this is not going to be a kids movie: we see shadows having sex in the shower, and then the door opens and Debbie scolds Pete for taking Viagra; she says that they are young and that young people shouldn't need those kinds of drugs. I had also forgotten that Melissa McCarthy (Bridesmaids) was going to be in this film, and she plays the mother of one of Sadie's classmates, whom Debbie tries to (hilariously) intimidate at one point. Jason Segel and Megan Fox also have supporting roles, Segel in the same role as before and Megan Fox as another of Debbie's employees whom all of the married men like to ogle.

Yes, see this film. I'd like to rewatch Knocked Up now too, since I last saw it five years ago and would like to remember these characters who are now in this movie more. I was surprised, too, that neither Heigl nor Rogen made a cameo in this film, but they undoubtedly both have busy schedules. Despite all of the raunchy, signature Apatow situations and language in the film, at its core it's really about family, and is actually quite a sweet movie.

This is 40 is in theaters today, December 21st, and is rated R with a runtime of 134 minutes. 3.5 stars out of 5.

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