From the guy who brought you Knocked Up and The 40-Year-Old Virgin comes Superbad. Seth (Jonah Hill) and Evan (Michael Cera) want nothing more than to lose their virginity before they head off to college. To do that, thoug... more »h, they need to get liquor for the big party that night. With the help of their friend Fogell, a.k.a. McLovin (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), and his fake I.D., the three of them go on a hilarious chase for that elusive booze, dodging incompetent cops (Knocked Up's Seth Rogen and "Saturday Night Live's" Bill Hader), angry neighbors and jealous boyfriends.« less
"Filmmakers Judd Apatow, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg make lowbrow comedies for highbrow audiences. With films like "The 40-Year Old Virgin," "Knocked Up," and their current gem, "Superbad" (directed by Greg Mottola), they have begun, in their own quiet way, to re-write the rules of the modern sex comedy, making films that, despite their R-rated blueness, are just a tad more insightful, a little more nuanced, and a trifle more literate than most films in that genre.
The characters in their movies may seem at first blush to be mere photocopies of the nerds and losers familiar to us from all those post-"Animal House," pandering-to-youth comedy hits of the late 1970's and 1980's. Yet, there is something rather different about these individuals, a difference that it is not always all that easy to put one`s finger on. They seem somehow more reflective and self-aware than their earlier counterparts, more able to step out of their skins and see themselves for who and what they are. It's almost as if these characters have had the added advantage of seeing themselves reflected in all those earlier movies (one imagines they've spent a great deal of their childhood reveling in "Revenge of the Nerds") and of extracting important lessons from those films to help them chart their course through life.
The storyline, in and of itself, is hardly original. The screenplay by Rogen and Goldberg chronicles the misadventures of three teenage super geeks determined to go to any lengths or suffer any humiliation to be part of the "in" crowd at school. With only a few days left before graduation, Seth, Evan, and super-nerd Fogell - an outcast even the outcasts can feel comfortable ostracizing - decide that the time has come to take some drastic action if they hope to have any chance of losing their virginity before high school ends. Thus, Seth cooks up a scheme to smuggle booze into a graduation party being thrown by one of the hottest girls on campus. It is the expected setbacks they encounter as they go about the business of achieving "coolness" that provide the comic energy for the tale.
As they did in "Knocked Up," the writers capture the way people in the real world actually speak. The dialogue may be crude and vulgar, but it is also sharply observant and wickedly funny as the characters lament the unfairness of life and reveal deep-seated concerns and feelings about themselves and each other. What's nice is that the characters in this film not only sound like people we might encounter in everyday life but LOOK like them as well. Even the "beautiful" people in this film aren't drop-dead gorgeous, just believably well put-together and attractive.
Jonah Hill, Michael Cera and Christopher Mintz-Plasse are so authentic and convincing in the roles of Seth, Eric and Fogell, respectively, that they have us securely in their corner from the very first moment they appear on screen. Rogen and Bill Hader ("SNL") also have a good time playing goofy cops, although their characters aren't as finely drawn or interesting as the three main characters, and the scenes with them do tend to drag a bit.
It is crucial to point out that, amidst all the blush-inducing, foul-mouthed hilarity, there's an incredible underlying sweetness to "Superbad," particularly in the final two scenes of the movie.
Together, this team of talented filmmakers is making it fun to go to the movies again."
Making the Scene
R. J Rey | Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic | 12/02/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Rising young stars Jonah Hill (Knocked Up) and Michael Cera (Arrested Development) have one last shot at popularity in the very funny coming-of-age comedy "Superbad". Seth (Hill) and Evan (Cera) are lifelong best friends who really want to lose their virginity before heading to college. When they are invited to the year's biggest party, the boys use their friend Fogell's (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) new fake I.D. to score some alcohol for the party but their plan soon turns to a madcap night of unpredictable and outrageous situations. "Superbad" is an uproariously funny teen comedy from the creators of "The 40-Year-Old Virgin" and "Knocked Up". The raunchy teen comedy delivers a well paced storyline, some side-splitting moments and memorable comic performances. Seth Rogen (Knocked Up) and Bill Hader (SNL) are hilarious as two incompetent police officers. "Superbad" received overwhelming positive reviews from US critics and became one of the year's highest grossing comedies with over $130 million nationwide.
If you've enjoyed "Superbad" in theaters, then I strongly recommend checking out "Superbad" Unrated Edition. The raunchy teen comedy is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen format with more unrated footage that wasn't included in its theatrical release. The picture quality is surprisingly good with no obvious flaws. The 5.1 Dolby Digital sound is clear and well balanced. Among supplemental material, the DVD includes 8 minutes of deleted scenes, trailers, a short gag reel, "Cop Car Confessions" and "The Making of Superbad" featurettes, an exclusive sneak peek of the upcoming comedy "Pineapple Express" and an audio commentary with director Greg Mottola, production crew and cast members. Overall, "Superbad" Unrated Edition scores a "B+"."
Michael Zuffa | Racine, WI United States | 09/05/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Evan (Cera) is a average shy high schooler. Seth (Hill) is loud and obnoxious. Fogell (Mintz-Plasse) is a big nerd. Together, they have a chance to impress the girls at a high school party by supplying alcohol. Evan is interested in Becca (MacIsaac), Seth likes Jules (Stone), and Fogell wants Nicola (Aviva). Of course nothing goes smoothly, and soon they are dealing with Officers Slater (Hader) and Michaels (Rogan), who aren't very competent and want to hang with Fogell, who is going by the name McLuvin on his new fake ID.
"Superbad" is a very funny movie. The dialogue is profane and very R-rated, but clever as well. It is like an even funnier version of "American Pie". The three leads are all believable as high schoolers on the brink of college. The camaraderie is genuine, and you can tell that they had a blast making this movie. Produced by Judd Apatow (director "Knocked Up"') and written by Rogan and Evan Goldberg, it is clear that they know their subject matter, and know how to make it funny. Apatow and Rogan seem to be the voices of comedy these days, and "Superbad" is a prime example. I recommend this film. "
Superfunny! Sorry, is that title taken?
H. Jordan | NY, NY | 03/29/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"SUPERBAD is just flat out hilarious. Start to finish funny. You take some awkwardness of high school. Some kids on the fringe. Mix in a few cute girls. Graduation. A party and a little coming of age. Stir it up with laughs that you never see coming and two lead actors that nail every joke and you have a modern day comedy classic."
A Funny Yet Ultimately Conservative Film
Chad A. B. Wilson | Houston, TX | 03/28/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Apatow's films are funny (see The 40-Year-Old Virgin (Rated Widescreen Edition) and Knocked Up (Widescreen Edition)) and this one is no different. It's directed by Greg Mottola who did The Daytrippers, another decent film. These movies take the standard sex comedy fare and add an ultimately conservative twist. For The 40-Year-Old Virgin, the movie says it's a good thing to wait until marriage to have sex. For Knocked Up, casual sex gets one into trouble and babies are better with two dependable parents. Superbad has another conservative message.
But don't go looking for a wholesome family affair, for this is not it. If I had to watch this movie with my parents, I fear that I would perhaps pass out. It's raunchy. Even though there may not be nudity per se, these guys talk like real guys, and they don't talk nicely about our, umm, private parts.
This movie is the story of Seth and Evan, based on the writers of the script, and one evening during their last weeks of high school before they split up to go to college. They have always been misfits, but finally, they may be able to become cool without changing. That's one of the good things. It isn't about these guys "fitting in" with the in-crowd. It's more about the in-crowd realizing that they're actually cool guys.
The movie is flawed, though. So much of the script is ad-libbed that some things don't make sense. Characters say things that contradict earlier ideas, and the editors just kept it becuase it happens to be funny. I guess I can forgive that.
The DVD has some hilarious extras, too, especially the one with Jonah Hill going through different versions of his lines. I don't know how they decided on only keeping one of them. I liked them all.
I have trouble recommending Superbad because of its raunchiness, but if you're okay with that kind of thing, enjoy and get something more than mere comedy out of what is ultimately a conservative, enjoyable film."