TedDirector: Seth MacFarlane, Universal Pictures, Rated MA, 106 mins
There have been many movies made about a man and his dog but barely any about a man and his teddy bear which comes to life after a friendless eight year old boy makes a Christmas wish that his toy bear come alive and be his longtime friend.
Ted is the first feature film for Family Guy creator Seth Macfarlane in addition to being the voice behind the offensive talking bear which also stars Mark Wahlberg (Contraband) as his childhood companion John Bennett who as an adult now with a dead-end job has a gorgeous girlfriend in Lori (Mila Kunis - Black Swan) but still prefers to spend time with his beer-drinking, foul-mouthed, pot-smoking teddy bear.
This comes to a head when Lori suggests to John at their special dinner celebrating their fourth anniversary of being together that it is time for Ted to move out of their apartment to allow both of them to get on with their lives.
Besides their relationship problems being affected by Ted’s “bear behaving badly” behaviour there are two sub-plots within Macfarlane’s fanciful storyline that includes Lori’s lustful boss Rex (Joel McHale - Spy Kids 4) as well as a stalking stranger (Giovanni Ribisi) out to kidnap Ted for his silly son (Aedin Mincks).
Except for the tasteless toilet humour, Macfarlane’s live teddy bear creation (due to his use of motion-capture technology) does provide some amusing scenes particularly John and Ted’s adoration of the 80’s movie icon Flash Gordon with ageing star Sam Jones appearing at Ted’s salacious party where the bear’s behaviour with hookers goes over the top.
There is no doubt that Family Guy fans will enjoy this kind of movie while others may see it as bearly passable preferring to watch a real story of a person’s friendship with a dog or a horse rather than about an offensive bear.
VIC'S VERDICT: 2 ½ Rubber Stamps
21 Jump StreetRelease Date July 2012
Directors: Phil Lord and Chris Miller, Universal Sony Pictures, Rated MA, 109 mins
The beloved TV series of the 80’s that launched Johnny Depp’s career has been brought to the big screen by relatively new filmmakers Phil Lord and Chris Miller who earlier directed the family animated movie Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.
In this reboot about two underachieving police officers, Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Jenko (Channing Tatum) are partners who under instruction from their Captain Diskson (Ice Cube) are assigned to go undercover to flesh out a drug ring operating at a high school.
Posing as high school teens provides plenty of laughable sequences but like the clumsy chums in Police Academy nothing is going to stop the dynamic duo from fulfilling their mission.
Unlike the TV series the directors have taken a comedic approach to their action movie with Tatum surprisingly stealing many of the entertaining scenes from Hill which shows their comedic chemistry in being able to play off each other’s character.
And of course a pleasant addition is the cameo appearances from the stars of the original TV series-Johnny Depp and Peter Deluise.
VIC'S VERDICT: 3 ½ Rubber Stamps
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