I basically grew up on Apatow films (not that this is one, but c’mon, practically), and anything with Seth Rogen, Jonah Hill, Jay Baruchel, Danny McBride or any of the other comedic actors in this. It’s an understatement to say how much I like them, but even bigger is why it took me so long to finally see this. I think part of it was knowing that it was out there, like a white whale of guaranteed hilarity that I knew was out there and I could actually catch, with it being a carrot on a stick kind of thing that I wanted to experience, but knew once it was over, I wouldn’t have that feeling anymore, if that makes any sense… Anyways, it was about what I expected and that’s good!
The whole “apocalypse” setting is really cool and all, and a different place to set a comedy, under such seemingly dark terms, but really it’s all just a simplistic device to get all these guys in the same room together. Not to be unfair, but that’s really all this movie is, all six of these guys (Seth Rogen, James Franco, Jay Baruchel, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson and Danny McBride) just shooting the shit, telling jokes, arguing, basically setting up stuff just to riff for comedy. That’s really all I needed or wanted, and we get that in full force. Of course, what’s greater is that they’re all playing themselves, or slight exaggerated versions of themselves, so the humour ran even deeper.
I’m curious to know how this would play for someone having never seen a previous film of these guys, apart or together, and not knowing that they are real life friends. A lot of the comedy, and strengthening of it for me was knowing how they were in real life, and all the references to their films and friendships and how each relationship with each guy was different. It’s funny to me that Jay Baruchel is the outsider guy (while slightly true), and kind of hated on by the group, and how everyone reacts to him. I’d imagine the film would be funny to someone coming in dry, but indeed the film does feature a lot of “in” humour. The Pineapple Express references are a prime example here as well.
Time in and time out goddamn Danny McBride steals the show. There is no line he can’t make funny by delivery, and he has this insane talent to riff on one certain thing and keep going and going and going, somehow still making it funny. Improvising I guess you could say in short. It’s pretty much why Kenny Powers is one of the best TV characters of the past decade, and he continues it into whatever he does.
This is pretty much a group of buddies turning the camera on and having fun. Not to take away from Rogen and Goldberg’s directing which is fine and competent, really all it needs to be, but really we’re focusing on the one thing. Quite simply, it’s another Rogen and company movie that I’ll be happy to pull out whenever I want to laugh at Michael Cera high on cocaine or Kevin Hart dying.