Sunday, June 10, 2012

movie review: 50/50.

funny how the poster implies that joseph gordon-levitt has testicular cancer, when it is almost certainly spinal.  oh well!  i'm sure the temptation to make a nut-joke was simply too great to resist.

but what's this?  a movie?!  hey now!  we do review those every now and again!  weekly, in fact - at least now that game of thrones is out for the season (noooo!), and we've still got until october until we begin/resume liveblogging for our other "sort-of-a-movie," the walking dead.
so anyway. moving on to the movie!

canadian release date: 30-september-2011
writer: will reiser
director: jonathan levine
starring: joseph gordon-levitt, seth rogen, anna kendrick, bryce dallas howard, anjelica huston

fun fact!  it was actually bryce dallas howard who came up with the movie's title.  according to imdb, the crew was skeptical when she suggested it, but later elected to use the title without thinking to inform her. apparently, she was "surprised" when she found out, though there's no indication of when or how such a discovery was made.  i like to think her reaction was something like this:
it's a fact.

i wonder whether or not the above anecdote will set the tone for the rest of the movie.  i suppose well never know until we watch, so come on - jump with us!

for maximum enjoyment of our review, please refer to the following legend:
jgl = joseph gordon-levitt/adam (protagonist)
seth rogen = self-explanatory (bro-tagonist)
bdh = bryce dallas howard/rachael (girlfriend - bad girl)
anna kendrick = katherine (therapist - good girl)
any variant on the word "yaaay" = massive sarcasm and/or my disgust/distaste/disenchantment with this movie or a particular moment within it.

j/d: hey, there's a movie happening, and it's 50/50. nooo, not a spy-vs-spy-esque thriller starring curtis jackson, but another movie - about cancer! it has seth rogen and joseph gordon levitt. it's also based on a true story.

r/r: based on a true story!  a freaky story?

j/d: as an aside, want to drink a bunch more than normal?
two drinks every time there's a montage!
ha! good luck, kiddo.

also, it's brought to you by summit entertainment, 'cause every creative idea is paid for by a company!
yay, captalism.

r/r: this shot features maple leaves plastered to the rainy curb!  maybe?  i could just be projecting.

it is very deserted where jgl lives!  what city is this meant to be, exactly?  i'm sure i'm meant to recognize it by various landmarks already (and i admit, it seems achingly familiar), but i a)am not american; and b) have already had some drinks!
ed note: apparently it is meant to be seattle, but the filmmakers erred by leaving in the lion's gate bridge, located in vancouver, bc.  oh, that explains why they have to thank the canada film board!  i was wondering about that. also, i've totally been to stanley park!  go weird memory shit!

j/d: hey look! an ipod, and a guy running next to the water. it's JGL!
it's 50/50.
sooo, umm… this is one of those pretty typical musical montage intros showing off the setting of the city the film takes place in. neat, but boring.
oooh, we stop at a red light. it's pretty safe to cross, and some dude jay-runs, but JGL won't.

j/d: home time! shower! ladies?
he's out of soap - he uses shampoo.

r/r: his name is adam!  he follows the rules!  and he's pushing his girlfriend into domesticity, yay!  i'm sure when he's diagnosed with cancer, that won't exacerbate the issues in their relationship.  yippee!

j/d: "so are you staying over tonight?"
there's a girl at his place. his name is adam, this character. her name is? she's not big on staying the night, but apparently he's put her stuff in a drawer… her drawer. domestication.

r/r: haha, toothpaste kiss.  kind of gross.

j/d: now seth rogen's outside, blowing the horn. i guess they carpool.
he's now being teased about his smell. oooh, it turns out he used his girlfriend's shampoo instead of his.

"you smell like the fucking cast of the view."

r/r: yaaayyy women are yucky, along with their women-scented things!  eeew, shampoo.  ewwww, the view.  eew, vi-ewww, vaginas (vaginae?), yuck!  etc.

j/d: okay, apparently they're late. this is tragic. but cappuccinos are required.
in line at the cappuccino place, adam's back hurts… he's going to the doctor about it.
uh - oh!

r/r: re: froggy-style sex - can't you just like, use your imagination?  i've got a pretty clear visual right now, i tell you what - and no interest in illustrating it for y'all, despite my mad mspaint skillz!

j/d: seth rogen asks if he's having sex in weird ways. this leads to a sad conversation about his sex life with the lady back at the house. it's umm, sad. then they run to work, from the coffee place? forgetting the car? and ummm, from there have some conversations about high school, y'know to cement the fact they've been tight buds for a long time.

r/r: um, she's absolutely entitled to not have sex with a yeast infection or a period.  or WHENEVER SHE DOESN'T FUCKING WANT TO, JUST LIKE HIM.  ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME.  I SAY FUCK A LOT SOMETIMES.
now there's a bunch of shit that simultaneously shames women for giving blowjobs and for not giving blowjobs.  yaaaaaaaaaaayyYY

r/r: and more pearls of wisdom from seth rogen: if the relationship is not mostly about sex, it is not a successful relationship!  
it can't possibly be that not having sex is a symptom, not the problem itself?  because they are, you know, incompatible, and each have completely different interests and expectations - as in, if she's feeling uncomfortable with how fast he's moving emotionally, she might not want to fuck him and confuse him even more, right?
and who's to say jgl's libido is the same as yours anyway - or hers?  so how can you judge him on that?  yaaaaay!  yaaaaay movies!

j/d: anyway, they're at work now.

r/r: what is their job?  they are late, that i know.

j/d: some douchebag, maybe a boss? greets them.  their names are kyle and adam.
they work at a radio station?
ha, this conversation about dialogue and not being able to cut without breaths.
ha, i say! i can fucking cut without breaths. learn to edit, monkey.

j/d:  "your voice sounds like a robot. do i sound like a robot?"
he sounds like a rabbit robot.
kyle's on the phone discussing world music.  he's doing so very loudly and adam can't edit. eventually, adam takes a bus.  to the doctor, it would seem.
lots of lab coats.

r/r: i really think i used to like seth rogen, like a lot.  why is that?  i can't seem to remember.
but then! hahaha, jgl's impression of him makes it all worthwhile!

j/d: now he's biting his nails in a doctor's office and reading a pamphlet.
the doctor comes in and ignores him, reciting notes to a dictaphone.

adam raises his hand.

"sorry, i uhh, didn't follow that. is there something wrong with me?"

r/r: haha, doctors!  that is severely lacking in both tact and class.

"this cephalopod-like object"
shout-out to my imaginary bffs!

j/d: it turns out he has a tumour. it's malignant… the doctor explains, upon request, how a non-smoker, non-drinker gets a tumour, but he gets all woozy and stops paying attention. this is illustrated by extra saturation and a high pitched hum that usually accompanies characters getting bad news or on the verge of losing conciousness.

r/r: but doc, sickness is something that happens to people who deserve it, or somehow incur it by their actions - right?!

j/d: he wants to know if he's going to be okay. the doctor doesn't answer.

r/r: "if you need someone to talk to, [get the fuck out of my office]"

j/d: radiohead.

two montages, like… 5 minutes in? all right.  more drinking, i guess.
sooo, he's googling his cancer.
he has a 50% chance of surviving. how surprising!

now he's on a bus again.

r/r: i like this song!  i can imagine listening to this song while walking around and staring at a screen, mulling over and researching my malignant diagnosis.
oh, and morosely riding a bus.  it's a great bus song.

j/d: at home, the girlfriend is surprised, and he tells her she can bail if she wants to.

"i'm not going to bail, adam. i'm here for you, okay?"

hmmm, sure.
i've seen the trailers.
you're not in them.

r/r: once you throw out a word like bail, i think actually bailing becomes a lot harder.  but this is just a theory!
bryce dallas howard is pretty.  that is less of a theory.

j/d: okay, kyle is surprised and sad. they umm, can't pronounce the name of it.

"do you have a picture of it?"
"why would i have a picture of it?"

r/r: seth rogen is having a hard time dealing with jgl's cancer.  
"it's common practice to -- fucking keep pictures of shit now, i don't know!"
i laughed out loud.  good job, movie!  that only took...ouch, fourteen minutes.

j/d: alright, more mentions of the title, and a discussion of well, you saw it in the trailer… lance armstrong, dexter, patrick swayze?! okay. that's funny.

i had it made before he died, it's not in bad taste.

"that guy's dead."
"i didn't know that."

ooh, he doesn't take it so well.

r/r: his quick turn-around to positivity around the odds, and then subsequent crash upon realizing patrick swayze is dead made me smile.

j/d: hmmm. his family is very healthy.

r/r: uh, how will his dad having alzheimers make jgl's cancer easier on his mom?  oh, seth rogen's character!  you and your soundbite-y "goodness."

j/d: alright, off to see the parents, them the news.
ah, man.
his dad doesn't remember him.

r/r: oh, this is sad.  his dad introduces himself.  nice acting in jgl's jaw.

"okay, okay, i know you use protection!"  
his mom is kind of pushy about the landlord too.

j/d: inside, funny exchanges about art and non-supportive people.

r/r: "oh yeah, rachael made it!  it's called oppression.  no, that's right, that one's liberation, the um, oppression's in the bathroom."
his mom says it's nice, and rachael seems genuinely happy for the compliment. lawlz, art is so stupid, right?

r/r: what are they eating?  what is on bdh's plate?  haha, he said "enough on your plate" as i typed the word "plate!"
grade-A fucking commentary over here.

j/d: sooo, they're eating some pizza, and it's time for the news.
the mom expects good, like, coupley things it seems.
adam wants the mom to promise she'll stay calm.

"have you ever seen terms of endearment?"
"jesus, adam, just tell her."

so, anyway, he breaks that he has cancer… the mom is taken aback, and
angry that he's waited so long to tell her.

"i'm moving in, adam."

she wants to look after him and drive him to appointments and look after him.

the girlfriend, whose name i still haven't caught says she will.

"… i'm going to take care of him."

r/r: bdh reluctantly announces she is going to take care of him.  his mom is mad flustered, and goes to make him some green tea, having heard on the today show that it reduces the risk of cancer by 15%.  jgl points out he already has cancer, so maybe she should sit down.

j/d: later, we're at a doctor's office again.
oh good, the doctor is a pretty lady.
her name is katherine…

r/r: anna kendrick (aka stacey pilgrim - what? i didn't see up in the air, okay?) is eating food when jgl comes in.  she looks young and is young and he comments on that.  she takes it as a comment on her appearance and/or her standing with others.  ooof course.

j/d: she was eating lunch, but that's over now! she has an appointment.
she's the psychologist, it would seem. she's twenty-four and hasn't heard
of doogie howser though? pffft.

r/r: OH MY WORRRRD.  I AM SO TIRED OF THIS AGE-OLD TROPE IN MEDIA WHERE WOMEN ARE UNAWARE OF/OBLIVIOUS TO CULTURAL TOUCHSTONES/REFERENCES (all that shit's by and for menz, amirite?  and women don't enjoy media of their own volition - not without a man to introduce them to it first, silly!).  booooooo  i mean yaaaaaaayyyy

j/d: oh, word. she's in training, and he's her third patient. that's going to work so well.
he asks about the first two…

"can't talk about that."

that's cute.

this is all for her dissertation. that is a little off-putting for adam.

r/r: this scene brings up an interesting angle of consent - he understands that you won't be using his name, but that doesn't really mean he or any other patient is okay with you using their stories and experiences.

j/d: so anyway, things are weird and he thinks he's calm.
she tells him he's in shock. that's well, pretty humourous. not like, "ha, this movie is funny humourous," though. kinda more of a," huh that would suck" humourous
he's not into that idea.

things get awkward and there's more nail-biting.
literally, not figuratively.

r/r: i like the way she's acting this, with the up-talking and such.  she seems like a complete character, though admittedy a limited one so far.  it's funny how she keeps predicting and typing his behaviour according to textbook analysis and insisting that he can't be deviating from that...she's not so great at this yet, i guess.

j/d: so, they're going to do some relaxation exercises. these involve new age music on her laptop.
he's supposed to lie down and close his eyes and, well, trust her.

r/r: she talks him into closing his eyes.  he should probably take his jacket off too..can't imagine that's too comfortable.

j/d: new scene, eyes closed at home with the girlfriend. she's bought him SKELETOR, retired race dog.

"having a dog helps the healing process."

r/r: skeletor, the retired race dog!  oh my cod, i love him!!!!!  i do not, however, love the idea of bringing in a dog as a healing aid for a person who isn't even looking to get a dog, and when said dog is meant to be a rescue who likely needs its own focused caregiver.  but whatever!  it's not like they're conscious beings capable of deep emotional responses to trauma!  yaaay.

r/r: yaaaaayy rape jokes!  about dogs!  yaaaay for movies!

j/d: sooo, now we're at like, a work party for adam that kyle seems to be using to get laid.
i mean, to celebrate adam's life.

r/r: yaaaay, using your friend's illness to "get" sex!  yaaay!

j/d: everyone's a dick about cancer, and questions, etcetera. i guess this is funny?

r/r: i like this montage of people reacting to jgl a fair bit though.  and note!  there is a writer cameo in this scene!  he speaks the line "my uncle had what you have."

r/r: seth rogen, creeping on some lady: "i like getting touched when i cry.  i don't know about you."

j/d: another day, another scene. adam's getting dropped off at some place? ooh, okay. a hospital.  his girlfriend is driving him.
she doesn't want to come in though.

r/r: what is she dropping him off for?  pfft!  so she's not dropping four hours or more of her day to wait around at the hospital?
that being said, going for chemo by yourself - for any treatment by yourself - is probably pretty scary.  and she did agree to be his caretaker, even though she didn't mean it.  okay movie, i'll allow it!

j/d: it seems today might be the first day of chemo?
yeah, probably.

it's sad and there are sick people in the hallways.
yeah, now he's hanging out and getting a chemo drip some people.
an old guy offers him weed macaroons.

r/r: "do you want a macaroon?"
aww!  how nice!
"there's weed in them."
even better!
a friend in need's a friend indeed
a friend with weed is better
jgl: oh!  yeah, i, thank you, but i, i don't do, weed.
old dude: come on, man, just get high with us!
jgl: (smiles) okay, thanks.
old dude is waaay familiar.  i'll look is up shortly.  but the chemo buddy characters are alan lombardo, stage 3 lymphoma, and mitch farnham, metastatic prostate cancer.  jgl is adam lerner, shrwehaltkneas sarcoma.  ...what?  i'm not a fucking doctor!  jesus!

j/d: people are giving him shit for being young and cancerous.

"this cancer is bullshit!"

j/d: aww, they're all introducing themselves and their cancers.

"what the fuck is that?"
"the more syllables, the worse it is."

"how strong are these?" (referring to the macaroons)

r/r: so you have to get chemo, but you do it while being high and walking past murals while the beegees are playing in your mind?  sounds like a best case scenario to me.
although, i do think that using a known cancer patient's music in your movie about cancer is an interesting decision that gets awkward reaaaaally fucking fast when said musician dies shortly thereafter.
let's all take a drink for robin gibb, and enjoy a cover of to love somebody performed by billy corgan with robert smith.

j/d: so now he's walking around high as fuck in the hospital in yet another montage.
yes folks, 28 minutes, 3 montages. that's one every 9 minutes, roughly.

j/d: so that all comes crashing down a bit later, as he wakes up to vomit his guts out.

r/r: jgl wakes up looking like a nineties alcohol-safety ad (you the man, cool guy!) and runs to the bathroom where he violently pukes.
poor guy.  he's having his first post-chemo therapy session.  he seems like he's going through some serious side effects.

j/d: okay, now we're back at katherine's and she's asking him about chemo.

she assures him his side effects are natural. he gets angry. she notes that, and then she notes that he has moved on through the emotions, it seems. so yay. now one of these scenes with dudes repressing feelings. he wants a relaxation excercise!

r/r: "i'm not angry!...why would that be good?"

he doesn't want to get in touch with his anger.  he wants to do the penguin exercise.  

slide! (link)
but he feels he might have offended her, so he apologizes and gets overcompensate/hero-y..which i suppose is kind of understandable, given his position - attempting to enforce a sense of normalcy and control by assuming a masculine protector role because his life might be slipping away from him.

j/d: he's a bit of a bully in these sessions.
he apologizes for being an asshole.

r/r: "i don't need you to take care of me.  i'm trying to take care of you."

hahahaha they (the hospital "care workers") are advised to just like touch people like creeps?  

trust us, we're totally doctors
then it gets creepier, and it's funny again.  yay, laughing!  two times in thirty-three minutes!

j/d: the lady tells him she doesn't need to be taken care of, and suggests some books.
they have some awkward conversations about personal space and touching, then boom. new scene.

r/r: it's nice that the movie hasn't been about him getting laid as much as the trailers made it out to be.  then again, it hasn't been very funny yet either.  oh well, i suppose there's still over an hour.  yay?

j/d: adam and kyle are in a bathroom in front of a mirror.
they're about to shave adam's head, it seems. i say this, because, well, i've seen this scene (:p haha) about 50 times already. but hey, let's have it it. maybe there's a montage after. any way, it's kinda cute and sorta weird.

the voice overs are bad, quality and content.

r/r: and now the head-shaving scene from the trailers is going to happen.  seth rogen is reluctant to help.  why are they friends again?  have we ever established that, or is it just one of those things where you were friends in grade school and it just...stuck?
i'm asking honestly here, as this has never happened to me.
"gorbachev-like birdshit-thing on your head"
"like fucking michael stipe, or something"
wait, do people not think michael stipe looks fucking cool?  'cause i sure do!

j/d: "why didn't we go to barber?"

"that would have been a good idea, if you paid someone to do it."
"yeah, using your ball trimmers instead of going to a barber."
"…and it's not my balls, it's my ass. i'm joking."
"you're not joking."

r/r: the body trimmer joke..i liked it better in the first harold and kumar movie.
dude, i trim my nose hair with those!

r/r: do you have to say "from star trek?"  you already said "klingon."  that line alone makes it clear this dialogue is improv-ed, in a way that oddly feels less organic than the scripted blandness we've been viewing thus far.  wacky!

r/r: bald + hat = much more sick-looking jgl!  go, wardrobe!

j/d: the hospital crew wants to know what the deal is with rachael (!!) never coming inside and shit.
he says they can meet her when he gets picked up.


guess he didn't factor in fear-inducing hallucinogens!  RACHEL!!! (link)
she's not there! he calls, and she's not there to pick him up. his buddies bounce.
he bites his nails.

r/r: "how come we've never met rachael?"
"yeah, what the fuck?"
jgl can't seem to get a clue about how shitty his relationship is.  he offers to have his chemo-buddies meet rachael when she comes to pick him up.  of course, she doesn't show up, contrivance?  i mean, if we don't have a lady-character who is yucky, how will we know that the other lady character is cool?  i mean, she's still a lady, which, gross!  they're so frilly and boring and uncool and unfunny and sex-withholding, yuck!
i will say that i like the nail-biting as a character detail.

j/d: eventually she shows up. it's like, hours later apparently?
now they're fighting. he's mad, because he gave her an out.

r/r: i don't really get why she was late, but it was a realistic fight.

j/d: later, they're buying some books. one of which is mystic psychiatrist. woo.
oh hey, look! kyle says they should go to mardi gras, because adam doesn't get play anyway, so he should forget about his girlfriend/lie to her.

kyle then walks off and tries to use adam's illness to manipulate more women?

r/r: what is it with seth rogen + blondes in bookstores? 
the lady seth rogen is hitting on looks familiar, a little like amanda from ready or not:
on the left, for those not in the know (link)
and a little like talisa from game of thrones:
her name is claire, as seth rogen's character practically chants on their way out the door like he's brandishing a trophy.  yaay.

j/d: adam's at home.
people are calling… well, it's his mom.
he doesn't answer is iphone, and then answers the house phone.
she offers to come over and make dinner, or pick up things he might need but,

he says rachael's coming over later and
"i'm totally fine. don't worry so much."

r/r: he has a landline?  people still do that?
why is it so hard to tell others when you want to be alone?  is it because it's so hard for them to hear it without taking it personally?  is it just that they don't believe it?

j/d: now there's one of these here art shows that were discussed earlier on. kyle is digging on a circle with a line in the middle, and its matching buddy. but then he has an emotional "thing" to a statue made out of frames.

oh hey, rachael is out and about making out with some dude that looks like jesus with dreads. kyle takes a picture and then is an inappropriate cock. get it? no? okay.

r/r: seth rogen is douching about art.  his tie is noticeably crooked.  what is this trope where women cant tell when guys are gaming on them?  do men writers really believe we don't see this kind of thing every day, or do they just see it as incredibly benign?
anyway i guess the point of this scene is for him to see rachael cheating.  and then he takes a picture of her and says the following:
"oh!!!  i fucking nailed that cunt!"
then he scurries away with his date in tow, pausing to reassure her that "i don't usually say that!"
i am...about eight percent mollified.  which, let's be honest, is more leeway than i'll usually give a guy who says that word - especially if he tries to justify it afterwards (no, i don't usually say it, it's just that she really is one!  quit stifling meeee! etc.)
his reaction is pretty extreme, considering he was just advising jgl to go fuck a lot of women at mardi gras.
not just one woman.  a lot of women. (link)

j/d: later that night, rachael comes in and just wants to go to bed.
but oh, hey!
"surprise, it's kyle!"

i like this. catastrophe is fun. and yes, kyle your profanity was quite overused.

r/r: rachael gets in some time very late, while jgl is sleeping on the couch.  she feigns exhaustion, and he agrees to just go to bed.  at this point, seth rogen shows up!  surprise!  smile!

i smile for miles. (link)
he's pretty wired, it seems.
"i'm sorry, i was in the neighbourhood, i was just on a date?  claire?  the girl i met in the bookstore?  my date did not go well, unfortunately, due to a  lack of chemistry, and an overuse of profanity on my part!" [possible paraphrase but it made me laugh a little]

j/d: eventually however, he gets to that picture
"look at it. that's rachael! and that's a filthy jesus-looking motherfucker! and they're kissing!!"

now he goes on to insult her personhood, but make a terrible argument for his own, simultaneously. but hey, this is dramedy.

r/r: seth rogen unveils the cell phone photo, which he calls "exhibit whore," repeating again that he has "nailed" her, by showing her for the bad person he always believed her to be.  yaaay sexualized vengance!  what a prince!  
he is then affronted when rachael refuses to give him a reaction, forcing him to realize that this situation has NOTHING to do with him.  

he doesn't leave the room, though. because..reasons?

j/d: anyway, these people have a conversation about her cheating on adam, and how he's been sick and stressful. it's acknowledged they had problems before he was sick, and that she doesn't know what to do now that he is.  she wants to sweep this shit under the rug. 
seth rogen points out this is the most uncomfortable situation ever and she should just leave. and they have a weird anti-lady conversation that well, kind of makes this movie smell a little like varnish.

r/r: i don't feel like recapping that last scene, but it gets emotional and she leaves while being berated by seth rogen until she eventually screams at him on her way out.  everybody wins, if by everybody you mean seth rogen.  oh shit, i just recapped it after all!  YAAAAY

j/d: yes! montage NUMBER FOUR!!!!
45 minutes in.  that's one every ~11.25 minutes


it is so tall!  and hilariously jacked!
i want to give it many hugs.

r/r: "if i was your girlfriend, you know what i'd be doing?  i'd be sucking your cock every thirty minutes, i'd be baking you cookies all day and shit."
"what kind of cookies?"
"any kind."
"would you make me snickerdoodle cookies?"

but like, why not go out, or be his girlfriend?  i don't get it.  or are you saying that if you were a girl, you'd be like, naturally self-sacrificing enough to centre your entire existence around him?  i don't know.  maybe you just like baking cookies and you don't know how to bring it up.
i guess what i'm trying to say is i want some cookies.  and what the fuck are snickerdoodles?  if the silliness of the name is in direct proportion to the tastiness, i would certainly like to eat one.

j/d: next day, i want seth rogen as a girlfriend, and a lady and a dog show up, thus cementing my belief that dogs get people laid.

"you could have fucked the shit out of her."
"no one wants to fuck me, i look like voldemort."

r/r: ha!
don't even play, jgl - we all know ralph feinnes is under there.  don't pretend you wouldn't bang him.

j/d: anyway, kyle convinces adam to let him help him get laid.

r/r: okay, some time past the 45-minute mark we've gotten to jgl and seth rogen in the club, trying out the "i have cancer" line.  it's so nice of them to give him a plot contrivance girlfriend so he doesn't seem like a creep just going out and doing this immediately, which, if late night talk show interviews are any indication, was not the case in the <echo> true stoooorryyyy</echo>

j/d: now, at the club. adam getting ignored.
kyle tells him to open right with cancer.

"great song."
"i have cancer."


r/r: oh my god, that's so cute.  he just keeps talking about the swiffer, being very excited.  it's great to see some insights into his nerdy awkwardness as a person, rather than just "a serious dude on serious illness"

j/d: okay, they try another one, and it looks like kyle is playing the wingman.

j/d: later, they're at a diner?  or maybe this bar has booths?
the girls want to leave, but then adam pulls the hat off.
now they're going to stay.
"what kind of cancer is it?"
"umm, spinal."

"how'd you get it?"
"uhh, bad mattress?"
"he's inspirational."

r/r: "bad mattress."
hahaha!  i laughed out loud again.  49 minutes:three laughs.  yikes.  or maybe they think this is an appropriate ratio for a dramedy?
j/d: okay, now a hot dog stand.
so much food.
aww… he's tired.

"no! we have to be awake when they're awake. that's how we get laid!"

r/r: what the fuck is wrong with this guy!  what a bad friend.  your buddy is about to collapse in front of you - you seem to believe you are helping him, but you don't even listen to any of the times he says no, or that he doesn't want to do this.  this is clearly all about your own agenda, even if you don't see it yourself.  and this whole, estimating the time it will be until they're having sex is so gross.  you get, you know what?  you don't lose any additional points for stating your intention to only have sex with conscious women.

j/d: adam says he's got to bail, but invites the girls back for potent medical weed!
smooth motherfucker.

r/r: jgl almost wins by fucking up the whole night for his bro - 
- but then brings everyone back for weed and gratuitous sex scenes, neither of which he seems particularly down for.

j/d: so win, the cute girl is totally riding him. but sex seems a little difficult.
it hurts his back, so they put a hold on the whole thing.
at least it wasn't particularly awkward.

r/r: yikes, it looks like she's hurting him but he's afraid to talk about it.  you can just chill out, maybe!  like, make out, or go down on her, or have sex in other ways. or hang out and blaze and talk! lots of options.
but not for them, it seems.  oh well.

r/r: the next morning, seth rogen and the lady on the couch beside him are naked under sheets.  seth rogen still has socks on, of course.
"wonder what the machine gun budget on this film was.  you cant afford actors, you need one million machine guns.
"can we watch something else?"
"no.  i want to see how this ends."
well, that sure gives an impression that the sex last night was fun.
not! (link)
when jgl and seth rogen make eye contact, seth points to the obviously naked woman wrapped up in a sheet and mouths "i fucked her!"
i guess i'm not sure what the joke is there.  yaay.

j/d: morning time, there's some milk and gross-ness that fades into another HOSPITAL MONTAGE!!
NUMBER 5. 53 minutes.

r/r: then anna kendrick sees adam at a bus stop, waiting to go home from his chemo.  she offers him a ride in her car.  she then tells him, awkwardly, she "won't take no for an answer!"
just like everyone else in this movie!  yaaaay

j/d: whelp, he was waiting for the bus, but then katherine shows up. she has a car and refuses to not be allowed to drive him home. her car is messy and she doesn't speak well. they discuss cars and licenses and causes of deaths and cars and cancer and hmmm… oh, wow, yeah. bus after chemo is bad. good call doctor. so, any way, he tells her about the break up, sort of. she mentions they can stop any time he wants.

r/r: she says she's not good at getting rid of stuff, prompted by the mess in her car.  i bet the filmmakers were pretty proud of that line.
jgl doesn't drive because it's dangerous.  as he articulates it, he realizes it's a bit silly now.  anna kendrick points out that the bus after chemo is mad unsafe.

j/d: he's starting to look really sick.

she tries to make him talk about it, but he wants her to get a bag to put all her trash in. he's really upset about the mess.

she just broke up with somebody… and well, like. this is really all to obvious.

r/r: she starts to talk about her recent breakup, but cuts herself off because of the need to maintain an ethical patient-therapist relationship.  she slips again, admitting to facebook stalking before turning on the radio, while jgl watches her with the first wistful stirrings of love in his heart.

j/d: any way, she's not supposed to talk about her personal issues, but she still facebook stalks the guy.

he asks her to stop the car.

they get out and clean the car to some hokey music.

r/r: "this is new!  don't judge me."  she's pretty cute, i like her.  i like that she's messy, too.  it would be easier to make her...antiseptic.

j/d: hmm, music… but this is not a montage. as a point of reference, i am quite aware that not all scenes incorporating music are montages. all noted montages are, indeed montages.

j/d: any way, they arrive at his house.
he gets out a little awkwardly flirty style and she gives him her cell number.

"did i like, score your digits?"

awkward situations!

r/r: they're at his place.  he thanks her for the ride; she thanks him for cleaning his car.  she gives him her number, and he makes a silly joke about it.  she takes it seriously and gets SERIOUS about it.
Serious Cat -  this are serious ethics violation
it gets all awkward again, and i think about laughing - but of course, i do not. because it is not very funny.

j/d: they're getting high and watching oceans, kyle and adam, some time later. great whites are in action!
rachael shows up to pick up her things.

"yeah, uhh, i put all your things in a box. it's outside the door."

now she's giving him shit for smoking weed.
it's not adam's scrip though, it's kyle's.

"i have nightblindness. my cones and rods are askew, and weed fixes that."

i know so little about the eyes!

but what is EYES? (link)

r/r: the two buddies (not chemo-buddies, the initial pair of buddies) are smoking a bong and watching nature videos.  racael comes in to get her stuff, not realizing they've already boxed it and left it outside the door.  then she gets all judge-y about him smoking weed.  *then* she is hurt that he took down her painting.  which, fair enough, she should get to have it back, i guess.  but i don't think that's the issue that she's having.  she asks him to go out on the porch to talk, where he apologizes for not going to her opening because he, you know, hates her.  she cries and tells him that she's glad he didn't come, because it was a disaster and no one bought her paintings.  he lies about liking her art, and shes pathetically grateful.  then she tries to force a reconciliation, claming she can "do better." i remember this scene from sarah marshall already, and all i can say is i'm glad it didn't devolve into a half-hearted semi-non-consensual blowjob.  *shudders*

j/d: anyway, adam and rachael go outside and blah blah she's sorry blah blah he hates her.
but he's nice to her about her paintings.

she doesn't want to break up. she wants to get back together? confusing wording.
then she starts kissing his face up.  he tells her to go.

"seriously, you should get the fuck off my porch now."

r/r: rachael leaves, not taking the painting because "[she] made it for [him]."
jgl and seth rogen wreck it once she leaves.  catharsis!

j/d: she leaves the painting, and they egg and throw knives and axes at it.
MONTAGE NUMBER 6!! 1:02, one every ten minutes.

but it is kinda cool when they take flaming hairspray to it.

r/r: now seth rogen and jgl are blazing with the chemo-buddies.  his one friend and wife have a beautiful property and an even more beautiful relationship. or do they?!
jgl thinks not.  maybe.
oh shit, that's how i recognize mitch!!
 max headroom! (link)

j/d: oh wow, now the cancer crew and kyle are smoking weed and talking about radio. it's quite cute. 'cause they're into radio… the old dudes existed in its heyday, and the young dudes work on it. it's nice.

r/r: poor guy!  his mom is overbearing.  must be why he's neurotic, amirite?

j/d: hospital, back with katherine. it's appointment time. his mom pesters him on the phone, and then he gets to appointment time. she suggests roleplay.

"i could be your mom."
"oh god, oh,that's disgusting."
"why is that disgusting?"

har! any way, he says his mom worries all day and it annoys the shit out of him, and he can't talk to her, and well, fuck. his life is rough, but hers is shittier maybe, katherine implies. then she says he's a dick, which is pretty funny.

r/r: "don't worry about it, i have parents too."
"do yours give you migraines?"
"well, i would talk to my therapist about my parents...yeah, we could do a role play!  i could be your mom?"
"why is that disgusting?"
how can she be so naive?  or is that a defense mechanism? 'cause hey, been there.
aww, she unlocks a beautiful way for him to understand his mother and her motivations.  and then she calls him a dick!  it's adorable and funny - i totally retract my earlier opinion.

r/r: awkward arm-grabby scene - soon it will be my vaginal canal gripping your penis veins!!! or something.  fuck, i'm so good at this recapping jazz!

j/d: at chemo. oh fuck! mitch died last night!

"we were just with him last night. he was fine. what happened?"
"what does it matter? his heart stopped."

r/r: oh shit, mitchell died.  other bro (alan?) is pretty upset, and jgl is getting quite shaken as well.
i like that scene.  seems to demonstrate the "what happened?" impulse as representative of our need for closure, answers, security.

r/r: still, i can't hear shit like this prayer and not think of:
 a)coolio (link)
b) deep blue sea. (link)

j/d: there's a montage of the funeral now. creative use of a cinematic device, and so subtly.

it's the colbert rep-

wait! that was montage number 7! 1:08

j/d: anyway, somebody edited that volcano piece he was working on earlier and it's upsetting to him.

r/r: wait - is he the volcanoes?  dammit (janet), what's a metaphor again?

j/d: back in therapy.
"so i'm starting to realize i'm probably going to die."

hmm, sad little speech about how mitch died, and alan is going to die.
katherine says it's the treatment, but he's just carrying on here.
(this is really that seven stages of grieving thing, right? or whatever?)

r/r: hey, has he reached acceptance?  i think there's still like half an hour left.
oh wait.  "the alienation phase?"  what's that?

j/d: oooh, he's going through the alienation phase.
fucking aliens, they're always up in our shit causing issues.

ah, how we loved attack the block(link)

j/d: anyway, she says he'll be fine, but he calls bullshit.
so then they have a therapy fight, and he storms out.

r/r: hey, i think barbara ehrenreich has a book about this.  i'd like to read it!
and i like this scene a lot.  very honest.  but also like, very representative of how limited a healthcare industry-based approach can be in terms of addressing each side of these experiences.

j/d: that night he starts making some phone calls because he needs a ride to a big-time appointment.  

j/d: later at the hospital, the mom makes a big deal about the temperatures, and then goes and inspects degrees. the doctor went to a state college. maybe he's not getting the best care possible, she says.
there are some tense scenes about parental relationships and grieving, etcetera.

r/r: tense family scene at the doctor's office, woowoowoooo
they struggle over jgl not letting his mom take care of him, when he feels he's already made a significant concession in letting her drive him there.  this leads to them having a serious conversation about how poorly she's doing.
"you're going to a support group?
"it's for parents whose kids have ca-ancer."
"i didn't know you were doing that."
"how could you?  you never call me back."
"i'm sorry."
"you don't have to say you're sorry."

it seems like she means it.  it's sweet.

j/d: whelp, chemo isn't working, so they're going to have to cut that shit out of his body. aaaand, if that doesn't work, he's done.

r/r: shit, the cancer's not responding to the chemo.  they need to operate within the week.  he may die from the surgery alone, and there is a chance that, should the surgeons be unsuccessful in removing the cancer despite how aggressive they're planning to be, they will be completely out of options after this point.

j/d: night time and the boys are hanging out near the ocean, sitting on benches talking about how they were tight way back in school. kyle's always hated adam's girlfriends, probably because he loves him.

r/r: reminiscing about prom.  what a surprise - according to seth rogen, the girl jgl took out sucked!  according to jgl, "you just always hate my girlfriends!"
seth rogen starts to deny it, but then confirms by saying jgl always dates "needy bitches."  a real prince, that one.  i sure...understand jgl better, knowing that he's bffs with this guy.  he's the guy who thinks all these things but would never say them.

j/d: anyway, they want to go to a bar. kyle's too drunk, and adam wants to drive.
apparently that's his "make-a-wish". man kyle is douchey.

r/r: looks like jgl wants to drive now.  seth rogen berates him for it, for not having sex with women he's paid while also skydiving.  he's drunk and belligerent.  "don't change my seat adjustment, okay?  it's all in places i like."

j/d: anyway, he's given him the keys, so here we go.  adam slams it in reverse, hits a bike rack, goes the wrong way down a one way street and goes wacko. then, he pushes kyle out of the car. then he freaks out in the car. he freaks out a lot because he is sad and has cancer. wheels are punched and screams made. then he calls rachael. he's mad at kyle because he just wants to get laid. oooh, he's calling katherine, actually.

r/r: jgl is not good at driving.  he seems to think it's a video game.
but he's no haruka tenoh. (link)
oh shit
is he going to kill himself in his buddy's car?  probably not, given the genre of movie it is.  but he looks like he was really thinking about it.
EXCELLENT freak-out scene.  very emotional, believable screams.  mediocre camera work.
jgl goes to call his therapist, and seth rogen screams at him for calling rachael.  which he is not doing.  he starts screaming and calling jgl a pussy.  jgl screams back that seth rogen is a selfish piece of shit" who "cares more about getting yourself laid than being my fucking friend!"  and it made me sad!  poor guy!

j/d: he tells her he's having a nervous breakdown.
he tells her just wants it to be over

"i'm so fucking tired of being sick."

he explains if the surgery doesn't work, "that's it… and you know, i've never been in fucking canada. i've never told a girl i love her. sounds stupid."
"no, it doesn't," she tells him.

she's right. canada is fucking awesome.

r/r: the pathos continues with his phone call to anna kendrick.  he lists off things he's never done (including being to canada, which is hilarious, because the movie's being shot there as he speaks), and apologizes for being an asshole.  she apologizes for being an asshole in turn, and being totally unprepared for him.  her job is really hard; if you do it poorly, you fuck up someone's whole life.

j/d: any way, they have an apology party, and that's a whole lot of fun.
he asks what she was doing when he called, and if she was on facebook.  she affectionately chides him, telling him she does more with her time than facebook-stalk her ex.

r/r: "i wish you were my girlfriend."
"girlfriends can be nice.  you just had a bad one."
"i bet you'd be a good one."
she avoids responding, they smalltalk goodbyes and thank-yous, and he hangs up so he can let seth rogen back in the car.

j/d: kyle interrupts by beating on the window, and that's that, mattress man, for that phone call.
that's that, mattress man! (link)
adam gets kyle home, and it seems everything is okay. upstairs, he plops him onto the couch in his brown, brown apartment, and some cheesy guitar and strings stuff plays.

r/r: now jgl notices that seth rogen has one of the cancer books he made fun of earlier in his bathroom - and it is a heavily annotated and well-read copy.  his friend cares about him after all!  he just has no idea how to be a nice person.  yay?  i don't...know what to say about that.  i hope he gets better at it, basically?  and i find it hard to understand why it was so difficult for him to, you know, talk to his friend, or try to do anything that his friend would actually want or appreciate, rather than trying to get their dicks wet.

j/d: in the bathroom adam is washing his hands and discovers kyle had been reading and annotating a book called facing cancer together.  he realizes kyle's actually a cool friend. he feels good and then walks home. no need to, you know, tell kyle or anything.

r/r: yay, skeletor the greyhound!  who is pretty muscular, i thought.  but still adorable and geeky in a way that's impossible to not consider pandering.

j/d: morning time! time to pay the price - errr face the piper? back against the cliche?
kyle's parked outside. things are very sombre and accompanied by boring guitar again.

what will happen?
awkward, tight-lipped nodding!
driving in a jeep!  
oh, i guess they're here already, so that was it.

j/d: they arrive at the hospital and have a cute awkward moment in the car, but there's a hug, and that makes it okay. being a dude pretty much sucks. i mean, i'm not saying it's worse than anything else, but it's pretty damn awful, all the posturing and antics and whatnot.

r/r: why can't you just say "i love you?"  he might die!
seriously!  performing masculinity is so fucking limited.  who cares if he thinks you are teh geigh?  HE MIGHT DIE.  it is okay to love each other!
we've got to love one another!

j/d: pre-surgery jargon, it's all tense and sad. the dad is oblivious and the mom's in denial.
adam's handling it well though, which is nice.

anyway, the sleepytime doctor is here.
adam freaks out, and okay, this is almost a montage. but not quite.

r/r: yay, two doctors of colour!  shit, i forgot to do the poc character count.  well, that was two people with lines - not, let's move on.
he tells his dad he loves him, no matter if he can understand it or not.  but, you know, very nicely, and better than i've just typed.  but i'm getting a little teary with his anxiety going into the surgery.  very realistic and sweet.
but!  a second surgeon of colour!  with a line!  we're up to at least three now!  woohoo!

j/d: oooh, but it is now! other people are shown! katherine! the parents! kyle! the surgeryt! surgeons!
MONTAGE NUMBER 9!  at 1:28

r/r: anna kendrick, pay attention to this guy (the patient you are ditching) too!  people who aren't jgl are still special!
sort of?
but, you know, don't go falling in love with them too.
now bart, you must promise not to fall in love with me! (link)

r/r: it would be fun to watch this movie with someone who knows about surgery - like, was that an accurate motion being made with that there scissor-handled tool?  it looked a bit unconvincing!

j/d: whelp, it's 5 hours later! everyone's convened in the waiting room. the parents, kyle and now katherine comes in. everyone meets and it's a quirky moment.

r/r: anyway, back to the waiting room, where anna kendrick is in the background, dressed all nicely for some kind of big reveal, no doubt.
she meets them all (jgl's parents and seth), it's cute and a little awkward, as per usual.  seth rogen recognizes her name immediately.
"did he say i'm a dick?  'cause i'm not." - seth
"i want you to know i smothered him because i loved him." - mom
bahaha!  number 4 laugh maybe?  not too...impressive, but not horrible, i guess.

j/d: the surgeon comes out! there were complications. he had a lot of his muscles and bones removed. holy crap. apparently he's going to be okay, but they removed like, his hip, his pelvis and a bunch of tissue. is he going to be robocop now?
i wish you were my girlfriend.

r/r: is he going to be able to walk anymore?  they've removed a great deal of bone and muscle and tissue.
but haha, doctors are unable to lead with the important info.
but it's a good thing seth rogen is there to explain to people how to do things!  yaaaay haha

j/d: in the recovery room adam is high on drugs and stuff, enjoying his "vacation" and giving fist bumps.

"you look good man," kyle says.

"i'm hiiiiigh as a motherfucker," adam responds.

j/d: whelp, some amount of morphine later, and katherine has appeared in his new room.

"i want to make you pancakes some time," he tells her.

it's adorable.

r/r: hahaha +1 for a guy who gets messssseed up in the hospital, and upon seeing the girl he likes, says "i wanna make you pancakes some time." i laughed out loud at the sweetness.

j/d: she grabs his hand and sits down on the bed.

"i'm peeing right now," he tells her.
"i'm not going to look."

r/r: haha!  and then i laughed when he was peeing!

j/d: some time later, we see his scar. kyle's freaking out, but it's quite okay.

"that's like saw shit."

all he has to do is like rub disinfectant on it and bandage it?

r/r: seth rogen is all grossed out by the incision scar, but it's really REALLY not that bad.  but it might be difficult to pack and unpack, i suppose - but wait, that's not even what he's doing!  he's just putting cream/ointment on!  WITH HIS FINGER!  WHICH HE DID NOT EVEN WASH, MY WORD

but anyway, hair growth and scar healing are a good indicator of the passing of time.  just in time, in fact, for jgl to have a date with katherine/anna kendrick!  i figure now is a good time to use her character's name.  why not?  it's not like she's going to be a doctor anymore, what with the weather massive breach of ethics and all.

j/d: anyway, he's got a date, likely with katherine. yup
she brought pizza.

r/r: "look at you!  walking up a storm."
cute stuff.

seth rogen fakes laughing at anna kendrick's babysitting joke, and pretends he likes her while still looking pretty hostile.  it's...i just want him to leave now, really.

my review will fade into garbled singing now.  goodbye.

j/d: there's some awkward goofiness as kyle makes his way out, and then yellow ledbetter is here
and okay, well the ending dialogue is like, arty - whoa.

"what now?"


*slow clap*

anyway, i hope that you enjoyed our rundown of cancer and the montages, featuring Pearl Jam and an awesome song. this movie is essentially just that - a movie. it features a beginning, and an end… a main character and a conflict. oh, and montages.

r/r: and at least 3 poc characters, all of which with one line or more!  like, one more.  maybe.  and a general reliance on the alleged comedy of non-consent.  and also, an overall tone of self-absorbed mediocrity for a subject with such emotional and comedic potential.  

our verdict?
...pretty much a movie!

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