Tag: Judd Apatow


The Big Sick

July 7th, 2017 — 5:27am

****

The Big Sick-rm

Kumail Nanjiani is a comic actor who is one of the stars of the TV series Silicon Valley. This movie is based on Nanjiani’s real life. It is co-produced by Judd Apatow who is known for two great comedy classics Bridesmaid and Trainwreck. Nanjiani comes from a traditional Pakistan family who emigrated from Pakistan to Los Angeles. They expected their son to marry a Pakistani girl which they would be glad to arrange for this to happen. They also would prefer that he become a lawyer rather than work in the world of comedy which he was doing as a struggling standup comedian. Emily (Zoe Kazan) meets Nanjiani when she makes some comments during his standup act at a comedy club. She is from Chicago but is living in Los Angeles. There is obviously a chemistry between these two as the story develops.

Stop here and read no further if you don’t like spoilers! Since there has been a great deal of press about this movie, you may know what develops in the film. One of us (SB) knew the story but still loved the movie. One of us (MB) also loved the movie but preferred not to know any spoiler events and viewed the film without knowledge of the background of the characters until he saw the movie.

So now, welcome to those who are just continuing with this review or perhaps are returning after you have seen the film. This movie was actually co-written by Kumail Nanjiani and his real life wife Emily V. Gordon. They recount how despite that they were very compatible sexually and otherwise, Kumail needed to please his parents and therefore broke off their budding romance.

The big event that changed everything was “The Big Sick” and that was a life threatening infection, which led Emily to be hospitalized and then put into a medical coma. This event brought her parents Beth (Holly Hunter) and Terry (Ray Romano) to Los Angeles where they meet and ultimately connected with Kumail. Hunter is terrific as the energetic and emotional mom. It is hard to forget Romano as anyone but “Raymond” of his classic TV series but he is still a likable character and could very well be the caring dad that he portrays. However, it is Nanjiani’s facial expressions that convey his emotional caring while his words express sincerity, irony, and comedy. These words, as well as the words added by all the actors were co-written by Nanjiani and his real life wife Emily V. Gordon. The comedic lines throughout this movie drew out loud laughter from our movie audience, which is something we often don’t see. Obviously, the continued existence of the co-writers of this film reveals a recovery and a happy ending of this movie and for this talented couple. The film is worth seeing whether you know the story or not. It is smart, funny, poignant and full of life, despite the “near death” experiences of the characters and their relationship! (2017)

Comment » | 4 Stars, Comedy, Romance

Trainwreck

July 26th, 2015 — 8:01pm

****Screen Shot 2015-07-26 at 12.09.42 PM

Trainwreck -rm

We were prepared not to like this film as we assumed it was geared for a much younger demographic than ourselves which may very well have been the case. However, we enjoyed it immensely.

The opening scene showed a father teaching his two young girls a mantra that “monogamy is not realistic” as he tells them about his pending divorce to their mother. One of the girls is Amy, played as a grown up young woman by Amy Schumer who also wrote the screenplay.

From the beginning we had the idea that Amy’s psychology was not founded on traditional family values. She had lots of boyfriends and sex seemed to be mainly an end into itself. It was also mixed with lots of drinking and smoking pot. Interestingly this was in contrast to her sister Kim (Brie Larson) who having heard the same message from her father was now married with an adorable stepson and a new pregnancy.

Amy works as a successful writer albeit with a magazine that seems to view life and sex in a manner similar to hers. With Judd Apatow (Bridesmaids) at the director’s helm we would expect Schumer’s comedic writing and her persona to provide lots of good laughs, which was certainly the case if we were to judge our own reactions and that of our theatre audience. However, the film developed much more than an extended Saturday Nite Live routine (which is where co-star Bill Hader achieved his renowned success). He plays Dr. Aaron Connors, a successful sports doctor, who Amy is assigned to interview for her magazine. The chemistry between them goes beyond the sex and they fall in love. Amy and the good doctor struggled with their differences and their attraction to each other. There are some very poignant and dramatic scenes, which Ms. Schumer carries off extremely well while staying within her character. We read somewhere that she is a classically trained actress and she certainly handled the tearful moments, angry outbursts and the comedy to perfection. The story uses satire especially in the sex scenes but also with the cameo appearances by Matthew Broderick, Marv Albert, Chris Evert, Daniel Radcliffe and some well-known professional basketball players.

We are left with a tour de force about the impact of childhood, falling in love, and growing up, which are all presented to us with a wonderful sense of humor.(2015)

Comment » | 4 Stars, Comedy, Drama, Romance

This is 40

January 5th, 2013 — 9:16pm

***

215px-This_is_40This is Forty-rm.No doubt you have to be just on the other side of 40 or know some people who are there to fully appreciate this movie. We obviously fit the later category. This is vintage Judd Apatow who wrote the screen play, directed and co- produced the movie. It is a sequel to his 2007 hit “Knocked Up” which introduced us to Pete (Paul Rudd) and Debbie ( Leslie Mann) also known as Judd Apatow’s wife ) We see them now several years later in the house that they can’t quite afford with two kids ( who happened to be the Apatow’s real kids Maude & Iris who play the bickering siblings perfectly because they are real sibs or perhaps because they are two excellent budding actresses  ). The setting is west-coast suburban but the story is the conflict, anger and yet wonderful familiarity that characterizes this marital relationship. It zings and satirizes  modern sexual relationships, the challenges of raising kids  and even visits to the doctor. Only the father’s of Peter and Debbie are shown. Pete’s father (Albert Brooks)  remarried with three young sons who needs to constantly borrow money from Pete is not a stereotype that we know but the duo captures the warmth of their relationship. Debbie’s father (John Lithgow) is also remarried with children and visits his daughter only once  every several years. The pain that she feels in this neglect is communicated quite well. Both of these relationships may play out in somewhat extreme manner but there will be something in them with which most of the audience will be able to identify. In the midst of the exploration of how school impacts the modern preteen there is a great performance by Melissa McCarthy as a mother of one of the kid’s friends who has occasion to sound off and really does quite a job of doing so. Lest you think that this is a serious drama, let me allay your concerns as it is mostly a comedy even if you are laughing at yourself or someone you have been or someone  who you know quite well. (2012).

Comment » | 3 Stars, Comedy, Drama

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