Pros: hysterically funny, totally outrageous teenage odyssey
Cons: not for everyone
Seth (Jonah Hill) and Evan (Michael Cera) have been friends throughout their early school years, and now they are graduating high school. Evan has made it into Dartmouth, but Seth has not. It's put a bit of strain on their friendship, which is more painfully obvious to outsiders than either of the two involved. Fogell (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), the third member of their quasi-loser's club, is getting tired of all of Seth's drama and insults. Such petty concerns loose all impact though when Seth gets invited to a grad party by one of the hottest girls in school, Jules (Emma Stone).
Fogell perfectly timed the purchase of his fake ID, and now Jules has entrusted the purchase of the alcoholic beverages for her bash to Seth. Seth has forged a cunning plan (ala Black Adder perfection) to get them all laid in one night. "You know when you hear girls say 'Ah man, I was so s*&t-faced last night, I shouldn't have f!%$ed that guy?' We could be that mistake!" Nothing and no one is going to stand between him and success! Thus begins another classic teenage Odyssey! Will Evan finally get out of his own way and get together with Becca (Martha MacIsaac)? Will Fogell change his name to McLovin permanently? Can our heroes overcome the many obstacles the gods will put in their way, or will they drown in a chaotic ocean of failure and peer-witnessed shame?
~~~ My Thoughts ~~~
I don't usually go for the "high school" comedy films. They often lack originality and wit, with humor consisting primarily of stale crude jokes revolving around sex and bodily functions. Rarely does the teenage epic achieve all that with real humor, but Superbad achieves this and more! The wonderful retro 70's soundtrack really added to the hip yet cliche feel, and the outrageous situations rival those of "Ferris Bueller's Day Off", "Grandma's Boy", and the classic "Animal House".
Writers Seth Rogan and Evan Goldberg have taken the bad in this genre, and transformed it into something that truly transcends into the Superbad in the very best of ways. One of the characters will open their mouth at any given point in the film and say something so shocking for either its' stupidity or its' crudeness that it becomes brilliantly funny. The discomfort and resentful acceptance of the unpopular when being tormented by the popular is very evident. As are other very realistic moments in this rapidly moving coming-of-age farce.
Seth has bought into his unpopular image so deeply that it honestly never occurs to him that someone as lovely as Jules would ever want to have anything to do with him if she weren't totally smashed. Which makes the culmination scene with her character all the more hysterically when what should be a touching and adult-growth kind of moment becomes something neither of them saw coming! Evan is equally cringe-worthy in his all too sober interactions with Becca.
The policemen (Seth Rogan and Bill Hader) who spend most of the night enjoyably bonding with "McLovin", are what every teenager who ever made a stupid decision at a bad time ever hoped a cop would be. "We shouldn't be c%ck-blocking McLovin, we should be guiding his c%ck." These two characters really add to the overall hilarity a great deal, and I was impressed with the lines these two could deliver with a completely straight face. Priceless!
Superbad never apologizes for what it is, nor does it pull any punches. Honest in its humor, and just when you think the night couldn't get worse or crazier... it kicks it up another notch with some well delivered line, totally insane situation, or perfectly worded obscenity that boggles the mind. You know the extreme foods that some people like to eat; like hot wings so enflamed that you have to sign a waiver to eat them? This is that kind of humor.
It is an exaggeration of its genre. A no holds barred rudefest that tries to shock you into laughter. It is not a film with wide audience appeal, and people Should Be Warned before viewing this film. Crude language, raging teenage sexuality, and abundant drugs and alcohol make the cautionary rating quite appropriate. I haven't laughed this much at a film from this genre in quite awhile though, and that alone makes it well worth the viewing. Highly quotable, with solid support from the large cast, excellent writing, enough action to stand up to repeated viewings, and over-the-top humor make it worth purchasing.
Favorite line~ oh so many to choose from, including the title I've used here.
Officer Michaels: "I'm assuming you all have guns and crack!"
Seth: "Nobody has gotten a hand job in cargo shorts since 'nam!"