Monday, December 12, 2005

40 Year Old Virgin

I'm a sucker for toilet humor.

A part of me thinks I like it because uptight people find it inappropriate, rude and get so easily offended by it. I get a kick seeing, or imagining people's distasteful reaction to the jokes.

But the real reason I think I like it is because I know from first hand experience, both as a writer and actor, how difficult it can be to execute effectively that type of humor.

Right now, nobody is doing it better than Judd Apatow and his posse.

Judd Apatow, if you don't know, is the director of 40 Year old Virgin. He also produced Anchorman, Cable Guy, Kicking & Screaming, and is producing Will Ferrell & Sasha Baron Cohen's upcoming Nascar comedy and is a writer on Jim Carrey's upcoming Fun with Dick & Jane. He was also a writer on Ben Stiller's T.V. Show and created Freaks & Geeks and the underrated Undeclared.

So when I say Judd Apatow's posse I mean Will Ferrell, Ben Stiller, Jim Carrey,Vince Vaughn, Paul Rudd, and now Steve Carell.

That's a pretty powerful, not to mention freakin' hilarious group of friends.

The 4o Year-old Virgin stars Steve Carell as Andy Stitzer, the unfortunate character mentioned in the title. Andy is a the guy who collects toys and doesn't take them out of the box, he plays video games during his time off, reads and collects comic books, paints his model soldiers and uses all the money he earns buying the latest technical gadgets. One day his co-workers reluctantly invite him to a poker game, and find out his unfortunate secret. The well meaning friends than decide to aid Andy in his pursuit to shed the title of being a 40 Year-Old virgin.

The movie is everything you'll think it'll be, lots of hilarious, inappropriate humor. Yeah, it's full of sex jokes and toilet humor, but you'll also find a sweet romantic comedy that'll please your female friends when they stare at you in disbelief as you laugh at some of the more offensive humor.

What's also interesting about the movie is that the comedy is not mean spirited. The movie could easily cross into that kind of humor, but it chooses to respect and even admire the character of Andy. So much so, that it unfortunately crosses into a typical PG-13 romantic comedy, which can make the movie feel longer for some, especially now in it's 17 minute longer unrated cut.

But even critics of the film will admit that it is a coming out party for Steve Carell, he's had scene stealing work in Anchorman and Bruce Almighty, but he really carries the entire film this time, and does so impressively. Carell manages to make Andy dorky, yet sweetly affable. One can almost imagine that someone like him could have such unfortunate luck with women. Although, in reality I doubt 40 year old virgins are as normal, or kind hearted as the character in the film. In reality they are very creepy, trust me I know, they shop at my job everyday.

The rest of the cast does a solid job, standouts are Catherine Keener who, in a change of pace, plays the likeable love interest. Paul Rudd, Romany Malco, and Seth Rogan are funny as Andy's well meaning friends and Gerry Bednob and Shelley Malil are scene stealing middle eastern co-workers.

If you're in the mood for a good laugh make sure to check this movie out, and also if you watch the dvd make sure to check out the funny special features, and deleted scenes.

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