First, let me say that I know I'm way behind the curve on this one. I'm not quite sure why I didn't get around to watching and reviewing this movie before now. Perhaps it is because my husband and I have had so many requests to review other films recently. Since we usually do one newer one and one classic one, we end up watching as many old films as new ones.
"Knocked Up" is based on an age-old problem. Girl gets drunk. Girl meets wrong guy. Girl has a one-night stand. Girl gets pregnant. We've seen the story told in film hundreds of times. However, rarely has it been done with such poignancy or hilarity.
The movie stars Hollywood's "it" girl of the moment, Katherine Heigl and funny man Seth Rogen. Heigl plays Alison Scott, an E (as in television's real E) employee who gets promoted to on-screen talent. She and her sister, Debbie (played by Leslie Mann) decide to go clubbing to celebrate.
Although not really looking for a date, when Alison has a few beers, suddenly Ben's (Rogen) attempt at humor seems charming. One thing leads to another and before you know it, it's wham, bam, thank you mam; or in this case, thank you mister.
In the light of day, the unlikely pair realizes they've made a big mistake because they have nothing in common. Alison is class and polish while Ben is crass and rough. He doesn't even have a job. He's just been working with his buddies on a website that identifies in which movies, and where within the film, Hollywood actresses can be seen nude. Don't get me started with that one.
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The two go back to their lives and don't give each other much thought. That is, of course, until the unthinkable happens. Alison discovers she is pregnant and decides to share the news with Ben.
In his defense, I have to say, it was nice to see a character in a movie step up to the plate; or at least try to. Ben accompanies Alison on doctor's appointments, goes shopping for baby clothes, and tries to fit into her life. He even ends up proposing when he discovers, of all things, that he actually loves her.
They say that opposites attract and certainly this pair couldn't be much more opposite. Yet they make a go of a relationship for the sake of their baby. But it isn't smooth sailing by any stretch of the imagination. They break up, get back together, and break up again. It seems inevitable that this relationship will go bust.
Eventually, the two call it quits for awhile. But when Alison goes into labor and can't get a hold of her sister or her doctor, she automatically calls Ben. Much to her surprise he leaps to her side and supports her throughout childbirth.
At first, I have to say that I didn't much care for Ben or for Rogen for that matter. Then an epiphany hit me in one of those V-8 moments. Rogen was so good at playing this disgustingly gross character that I was mistaking him for Ben. I also have to say that his subtle change over the course of the movie seemed just as "real" and natural.
Heigl has been one of my favorite actresses since she co-starred in a little television show called "Roswell." She has continued to grow and improve as an actress on "Grey's Anatomy." But her role as Alison in this film showed that she also has major big screen appeal. I can't wait to see more. In fact, my daughter and I are off to see her newest film, "27 Dresses," today.
I also loved Mann as Alison's sister Debbie. She was quirky and charming and delightfully funny. I found much of Ben's buddies a bit too out there for my taste, but they each had their own comical appeal. Paul Rudd, as Debbie's husband, was his usual charming and comical self.
I rarely like movies that are both written and directed by the same person. I generally find that, while they may excel in one area, they often do not in the other. Judd Apatow, however, certainly made me eat my words. His screenplay is hilarious and he was masterful at directing this film.
This is a delightful movie. It has lots of laughs and plenty of heart. Heigl is luminous and charming and Rogen manages to keep his character from becoming totally cartoon-like. Although, I will admit that he pushed that envelope - - a lot!
Our team at Split Community enjoyed this film. I actually can't wait to see it again to see what little gems I missed the first time around. Will it become a classic? It just might, in the way that some odd comedies often do. But even if it doesn't, people will be enjoying it for many years to come.
I give "Knocked Up" four out of five stars. It's worth renting by just about anyone. It's worth purchasing for the serious movie watcher.