Excerpt: "This Is 40" features a lot of Judd Apatow's signature humor, a strong supporting cast, and a lot of familiar moments for anyone with kids, but a meandering plot and an overbearing lead character ultimately hurt the film.
Excerpt: In This Is 40, Pete and Debbie are a married couple, two characters resurrected from Knocked Up, another Judd Apatow comedy from six years ago. Played by Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann, respectively, both are now crossing that milestone age of the big four-oh. He seems to be OK with it, but she’s freaking out.
REVIEW: Apatow Grows Up, Takes A Step Back With Messy 'This Is 40'
3 May 2013
Excerpt: This is 40 ends with a title card saying that it's "Based on characters created by Judd Apatow ." While this is true — the film's about Debbie ( Leslie Mann ) and Pete ( Paul Rudd ), who were supporting figures in Apatow's 2007 hit Knocked Up — it also feels like it might be more accurate for it to declare "Based on Judd Apatow.
Excerpt: The Film Five years after Judd Apatow struck cinematic gold with Knocked Up , the director is revisting some of the film's characters. However, This Is 40 doesn't check in with its predecessor's main focus to see how parenthood is treating the odd on-screen couple. Set five years after the events Knocked Up , This Is 40 isn't really a sequel as much as it is a spin-off.
Conclusion: 'This Is 40' may be far from 2012's best comedy, but many aspects of it ring hysterically and brutally true. Writer-director Judd Apatow sprinkles plenty of lowbrow humor across his episodic screenplay, which celebrates the foibles of family life and intimate relationships with underlying warmth, caustic wit, and deceptive insight.
Conclusion: This Is 40 is a mashup of a classic perils-of-family-life comedy you'd expect from a seasoned director -- bitingly funny yet frighteningly familiar -- and the kind of uneven, over-indulgent comedy struggling first-time indie filmmakers try to crank out before cutting their teeth. It's hilarious, its cast is fantastic (particularly Rudd, Mann and the Apatow girls) and it breaks the rules of sequel-making with fresh ease.
Excerpt: This is 40 actually reflects the conflicts and joys of ringing in the birthday in question if your name happens to be Judd Apatow. For the rest of us, it’s a passable comedy plagued by the usual Apatow potholes. With his latest film the writer/director behind Funny People and The 40-Year-Old Virgin takes another premeditated step toward the lyrical, insightful character studies of an Alexander Payne or a James L.