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RUNNING TIME: 133 minutes
• Audio commentary with writer/director Judd Apatow, executive producer/star Seth Rogen and actor Bill Hader
• Extended and alternate scenes
• Gag reel
• “Roller Coaster Doc" Featurette
• "Directing the Director" Featurette
• "Topless Scene: Wed Design Company" Featurette
• Loudon Wainwright
“Seth Rogen explores Grey’s Anatomy.”
Seth Rogen, Katherine Heigl, Paul Rudd, Leslie Mann, Jonah Hill, Martin Starr and Jason Segel
Seth Rogen and Katherine Heigl make unwanted pregnancy fun again. Whether they discuss the nature of doggy style or they try to have mid-term sex, fun is had by all. Throw in Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann as the older couple that’s constipated and sexless and watch the hijinks ensue. This is the kind of fried gold that have made sitcoms last for decades on end.
Do you want me to turn this shit into "The Brood"? I can, just test me.
Knocked Up is a special film about that odd as hell time known as your twenties. You have absolutely no idea what to do with your life, as the world favors the youth and the older folks. So, you smoke a lot of pot and look for majestic nudity in mediocre films. The world is simple until one night you make a mistake and you have to squeeze about a decade’s work of growing up into nine months. Then, there’s the fact that the person you’re shackled to probably can’t stand your ass.
It’s sobering to see such a perspective flip, when Apatow’s first flick The 40 Year Old Virgin was directed at the geeky base. Well, it was a mainstream perspective of the geeks of many shapes that populate the American landscape. In Knocked Up, we see a continuation of the themes of arrested development in the growth of the twenty to thirty year old American. The products of a consciousness washed in self-value and pop culture, it’s not surprising to see a film about adults who can’t give up their youth being such a hit. Riding that Zeitgeist right now shows that we’re all scared of being AARP members before we can enjoy Fantasy Sports or sex again.
Almost from the point of birth, we’re told to be these independent little creatures that are unique and special. It’s the Real World that drives any silly notions out of your head with promises and delivery of embarrassing failure at every corner. Apatow takes a near Gervaisian pleasure in reveling in the misery that this situation produces, but he brings us back from the edge. There is hope after all and Apatow brings it in a slow build to the final reel. We might not be unique or perfect, but we can work it on. That notion that Apatow keeps plugging into the film keeps one from wanting to jump into traffic and it’s honest. You don’t get a lot of that in a mainstream film.
This would be like Munich, if Eric Bana starred on cancelled shows rather than macking ladies.
Then, there’s Katherine Heigl. A lot of people view her character as too Hollywood and too much of an idealized woman. Someone that Rogen’s character could never get in real life. If the film was completely told from Alison Scott’s perspective, it could be a modern femme horror movie. The workaholic lady takes a night off to have fun with her sister, while drunk she gets knocked up by a fat ogre. I’ve seen women fall apart over less.
I could sit here and go on and on about character arcs, but I’d be amiss if I forgot about the supporting cast. Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann are the unsung heroes of the film, as the lead couple that Alison keeps comparing her situation with Ben. She tests her conception of the family unit on what her sister has achieved, but she can’t bring it to a point in which she can validate a prolonged relationship with Ben. Alison wants the father of her child in her life, but she’s not sure if she needs him. When combated with the thought of her brother-in-law’s possible infidelity, she’s left confused and doesn’t know if anything she knows can enter into the
Then there are Ben Stone’s stoner pals that want to start the nudie celebrity website with Ben. There’s nothing I can say about that group that other reviewers and the leagues of moviegoers over the summer haven’t voiced. So, I’ll leave with a word about Seth Rogen’s performance as Ben Stone. Seth Rogen carries this film on his back. I know that a lot of people give attention to the other actors, but this has been Rogen’s year. Between “Superbad” and this film, he’s become the hairy face of the ADHD generation. They’re a bunch of kids that can’t give a shit about anything larger than them, because they’ve been given no reason to care. The journey that Rogen as Ben Stone undertakes is inspiring. We can’t all be “Mr. Skin”, but we can be the people that our significant others need.
The Great Canuck Stare-Off lasted for weeks. No one had the heart to tell Harold Ramis that no matter if he won, it still wouldn’t bring back Ivan Reitman’s career.
The Unrated 2-Disc Collector’s Edition of Knocked Up is a stacked affair that I would consider to be one of the releases this year. Similar to the The 40 Year Old Virgin release, we get a slightly extended version of the original theatrical release. It’s not a bawdy change that prolongs the film past enjoyment and into dull repetition like the “Virgin” extended cut. Everything feels earned, as we get to spend more time with Ben and Alison. There’s no drawn out sequence with Stormy Daniels or any other potholes.
The multitudes of featurettes are dedicated to the various aspects of the production whether they were real or not. A big deal has been made on-line of the various bonus features that were created after Universal brought Capote director Bennett Miller in to shoot some bonus material. We get a look at the 6th unseen roommate named Gummy. Gummy was originally going to be played by David Krumholtz, but he took off for a role in a Woody Allen flick that never happened. The rest of the featurettes run from the miniscule to the usual alternate/deleted takes. But, the gem is watching Michael Cera lose his shit when it came to not getting the role. Those of you that strolled around the site around the theatrical release, probably remember seeing this promotional video.
You get how much in royalties from Halloween 6?
By the time I finished the set, I was a little winded. Everything that was salvageable has been loaded onto this set and I feel like it might’ve been a little too much. Specifically, I’m looking at the Rollercoaster Shoot featurette. I mentioned briefly about how the set tended to relish in the tiniest details about the production, but this went nowhere. The only enjoyment to be had is Jay Baruchel having a panic attack. But, taking delight in the terror of others doesn’t warrant a featurette. Every studio should be proud to have such an abundance of riches crammed into a two-disc set.
Sometimes, we take a role home with us. It could be Dignan, Hansel or Eli Cash. Yeah, it’s been a lot more Eli Cash than Hansel lately. Not every day can be a walk-off."
9.9 out of 10