Thursday, July 26, 2012

Move Review: Ted

Directed by
Seth MacFarlane
Written by
Seth MacFarlane (story)
Screenplay by
Seth MacFarlane

Alec Sulkin

Wellesley Wild

Mark Wahlberg
John Bennett
Mila Kunis
Lori Collins
Seth MacFarlane
Ted (voice)
Joel McHale
Giovanni Ribisi
Patrick Warburton
Matt Walsh
Jessica Barth
Aedin Mincks
Bill Smitrovich
Patrick Stewart

A cinena-wise friend of mine said: “We’re going to get remakes until the economy improves.” Well, we’re getting clones of television shows, too. Liking Family Guy is not a guarantee that you will enjoy Ted, which is essentially a clone of the show.
 Tony and I didn’t like Ted. It’s rare that I walk out on a film and ask for our money back. I can think of two instances: The World According to Garp and Ted.
 When I first saw the previews for Ted, I thought I was going to love the film. I’m fond of cinema of the weird. I like bears and the trailer was hilarious. Somehow, I suspect they saved the best for the trailer.
 I actually did laugh a few times during the first few minutes of the film, but I quickly lost interest. The basic storyline is cute: young friendless kid wishes his Christmas gift would come to life so he could have a companion.
 And presto—the bear’s talking without someone physically activating him. Ted becomes a celebrity, making appearances on nighttime talk shows and signing autographs.
But, twenty-eight years later, they’re still together and they’re still basically kids. It’s Peter Pan without pirates or a starship to make the action interesting. Instead, you’ve got mostly lame jokes and relationship angst. John can’t commit to his girlfriend of four years and Ted’s—well, Ted’s only serious love is Mary Jane and I’m not talking about a girl, I’m talking about weed.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not opposed to legalization and I actually think some weed-based frat boy humor is funny. I liked Reefer Madness and I love Cheech and Chong. Ted just went over-the-top stupid.
Normally, when I buy a ticket, I’m in for the long haul but I just couldn’t bring myself to spend another hour to find out if all ended well for the duo or not. Nothing about any of the characters induced me to care. The action figures Seth MaFarlane creates for Sideshow have more personality.
Can I recommend this film?  Only if you really like Dumb and Dumber type films and just want to see more. On opening night, the theater had thirteen people in it and two walked out. When we approached the manager, he wasn’t at all surprised that we’d asked for a refund—it’d already happened a few times before that day. His feelings:
“Some people like it. Some people don’t.”
So, if you go—be sure to check and see if you can get a refund if you leave. Before I’d recommend investing the time and money, just wait til it’s out for a $1 rental and watch at home with friends and beer. Or weed. Weed might well make this film the best you’ve ever seen.

Rebecca McFarland Kyle, July 2012


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