Saturday, June 27, 2015

Ted 2 (2015)

I know this will be shocking to hear, but it's not as good as the first one. It's pretty much exactly what you think it is, a so-so follow up to the original. This is all going to come down to whether or not you even liked Ted, and how much of a Seth MacFarlane fan you are.

Comedy sequels are almost always a huge step down, both in the laughs and the story. However, I'll give them a little bit of credit for actually having a direction that feels like it actually came organically from the first, with Ted trying to prove that he's a person. Here's my problem with this though, this takes place in a world where nobody seems to care or be in awe of the fact that there's a living teddy bear. He walks down the street and nobody gives him a second glance. Before you say, "Yeah, but he's not actually there. It's special effects", I'll counter with, "That's why it's called acting, and the director should also be directing them to pretend they see him". When people talk to him, they act as if they have no idea who he is. This lack of attention to detail shows you how lazy it all is.

As you'd guess, pretty hit or miss on the laughs. I did laugh out loud more than a few times, even had a few sustained ones well after the gag was over. There are just as many cringe worthy moments though, like when it relies on people behaving or doing things that simply wouldn't happen in reality, which is a giant pet peeve of mine. I was also surprised at the lack of non-sequiturs for a Seth MacFarlane property.

It's also fairly racist. Don't get me wrong, you can make jokes about race and it not be racist, but there's too many times where the jokes are all at the expense of certain groups and nothing else. This is something that Seth MacFarlane doesn't seem to get. He's always tried to toe that line, but he's just not as clever as other guys doing the same thing. Like when South Park does it, there's always some underlying point to it all that's pretty smart. MacFarlane seems to do it simply for shock value, and because he knows he can get away with.

Despite all the laziness, the one thing that impressed me the most was how committed Mark Wahlberg is. Here's a guy that never really seemed like he has much of a sense of humor, especially about himself, or gift for physical comedy, but he's really going for it. I guess he's lightened up as he's gotten older.

Anyway, it's worth a matinee if you were a fan of the first, but this is likely not going to move the needle otherwise.

2.5 (out of 5) Death Stars

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