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50/50 
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Post 50/50
Click here for the review of 50/50

SPOILERS must be tagged with the "SPOILER" tag!


Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:02 pm
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Post Re: 50/50
Quote:
There is a wealth of authenticity in the feel of the movie, as if Levine and/or his writer have endured some of this stuff. A lot of the subtle things speak of someone with an insider's knowledge.


I caught a piece of Rogen on The Daily Show and he confirmed that. I got the impression that he co-wrote it even though he's not credited. The movie is based on an actual experience that happened to one of his close friends (who is the writer, I believe). I haven't seen the film, but it would appear that Rogen is just playing himself from 6 years ago.


Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:11 pm
Post Re: 50/50
Nice review; I'm just surprised that Funny People didn't come up in this review considering the similar subject matter and the fact that Seth Rogen has important parts in both films. Now allow me to regurgitate one of my stock questions: how much Oscar-potential do you think this has? It's getting pretty strong reviews and nothing but praise for the writing and the acting but do you think this could be a legitimate contender?


Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:22 pm
Post Re: 50/50
oafolay wrote:
... do you think this could be a legitimate contender?


Odds are about 50/50 ...


Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:45 pm
Second Unit Director

Joined: Tue Aug 18, 2009 4:13 am
Posts: 330
Post Re: 50/50
I haven't seen enough "fatal disease" movies to determine whether those "cliches" that James listed truly apply. Nevertheless, if anybody's watching "Breaking Bad," that show takes on similar subject matter while combining comedy and drama.


Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:55 pm
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Post Re: 50/50
Breaking bad is the best show on TV


Fri Sep 30, 2011 11:46 am
Post Re: 50/50
ed_metal_head wrote:
Quote:
There is a wealth of authenticity in the feel of the movie, as if Levine and/or his writer have endured some of this stuff. A lot of the subtle things speak of someone with an insider's knowledge.


I caught a piece of Rogen on The Daily Show and he confirmed that. I got the impression that he co-wrote it even though he's not credited. The movie is based on an actual experience that happened to one of his close friends (who is the writer, I believe). I haven't seen the film, but it would appear that Rogen is just playing himself from 6 years ago.


....and the AV Club has a good interview with the writer (Will Reiser) and Seth Rogen about Reiser's experience with cancer and how the movie came about. Rogen's character was even called "Seth" in an early draft.

http://www.avclub.com/articles/will-reiser-and-seth-rogen,62519/


Mon Oct 03, 2011 11:46 pm
Assistant Second Unit Director

Joined: Sun Mar 29, 2009 11:21 pm
Posts: 109
Post Re: 50/50
A little surprised at the lack of replies to this thread. I saw it last night and it's definitely my favorite movie of the year. I laughed my ass off the first half, and cried my ass off the second half. The drama is powerful, feels really authentic and never feels maniuplative or schmaltzy. I think this is one of the best dramedies since the criminally under-rated The Savages, another movie that got a good review by James, but deserved perhaps another half star.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
Levitt's screaming in the car is one of the most powerful scenes I can remember in a long time. It's a scene that very easily could have failed and gotten unintentional laughter.

Also, the moment when Levitt holds on to his mom like a little kid and cries right before his surgery is also one of the most unforgettable moments and perfectly captures his feeling of hopelessness, that he just may never wake up again. Many people at imdb who went through a very similar ordeal have all confirmed how true that moment was in the movie.


After hearing that Levitt wasn't the original pick, it made me wonder why they wouldn't have casted Levitt in the first place. I think he deserves an Oscar nom for this movie, so does Anna Kendrick, and perhaps even Seth Rogan.


Mon Oct 10, 2011 6:39 pm
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Post Re: 50/50
The Next Big Ching wrote:
A little surprised at the lack of replies to this thread. I saw it last night and it's definitely my favorite movie of the year. I laughed my ass off the first half, and cried my ass off the second half. The drama is powerful, feels really authentic and never feels maniuplative or schmaltzy. I think this is one of the best dramedies since the criminally under-rated The Savages, another movie that got a good review by James, but deserved perhaps another half star.

[Reveal] Spoiler:
Levitt's screaming in the car is one of the most powerful scenes I can remember in a long time. It's a scene that very easily could have failed and gotten unintentional laughter.

Also, the moment when Levitt holds on to his mom like a little kid and cries right before his surgery is also one of the most unforgettable moments and perfectly captures his feeling of hopelessness, that he just may never wake up again. Many people at imdb who went through a very similar ordeal have all confirmed how true that moment was in the movie.


After hearing that Levitt wasn't the original pick, it made me wonder why they wouldn't have casted Levitt in the first place. I think he deserves an Oscar nom for this movie, so does Anna Kendrick, and perhaps even Seth Rogan.

Rogen? Really?

I saw the film yesterday and didn't love it. Wasn't particularly funny, though it was particularly truthful. Cancer movies, even the most manipulative ones, tend to hit me pretty hard. This one hit me hard inasmuch as its honesty never took the back seat in favor of getting a laugh or two. Take the scene where JGL shaves his head: there's a scene that could have completely lost its focus in the aim of milking as many balls trimmer jokes as possible. But it didn't. The scene never let us forget that, in JGL's character's mind, the hair needed to come off, regardless of the quality of the trimmer. I appreciated this.

But yeah. Rogen really kept me from enjoying the film more. He wasn't on his A game in my book, both in terms of comedy and drama, and the film suffered as a result. I didn't buy their friendship. I didn't really buy his friendship with Anna Kendrick's character, either, but I bought their chemistry if that makes sense.

Little moments had power. Big moments didn't. Mixed bag. Good intentions.

"When Adam is listing things he has never done, one of them is that he has never visited Canada. That scene, as well as the majority of the rest of the movie, was shot in Canada." Hilarious.


Mon Oct 10, 2011 6:55 pm
Post Re: 50/50
The Next Big Ching wrote:

[Reveal] Spoiler:
Levitt's screaming in the car is one of the most powerful scenes I can remember in a long time. It's a scene that very easily could have failed and gotten unintentional laughter.



I won't pretend to know your experiences emotional or otherwise but... really? That scene is obligatory at best and, at the very least, easy. Levitt is a better actor than his performance in 50/50 would ever have us know. His character's most interesting personality quirk is that he's possibly dying. That may be his only characteristic. Blame the writer, blame the director or blame Levitt -- the character is a vanilla bean with a tumor.

I might as well pull out the Drive card and point out that Ryan Gosling was able to channel all kinds of interesting internal dialog into a character that was 100% cipher.

Still, to avoid being a pouty little bitch of a makeshift movie critic, I'm glad that this movie moved at least a few people. To me it wasn't any good but that's partially a function of what I bring to the table. It took a shot at realism and missed the target... not a crime.


Tue Feb 14, 2012 5:22 am
Post Re: 50/50
Major Aphasia wrote:
Levitt is a better actor than his performance in 50/50 would ever have us know. His character's most interesting personality quirk is that he's possibly dying. That may be his only characteristic. Blame the writer, blame the director or blame Levitt -- the character is a vanilla bean with a tumor.

Wait, was that not the point of the character? He's as normal a dude as you can possibly get. He produces radio segments and he's pretty lazy about it. He jogs to stay in shape and he chews his fingernails. He has an overbearing mom and he tends to date overbearing women. He's fairly witty in a low key way and he recycles. He's meant to be a normal dude learning to deal head-on with a tough situation.

As for the car scene, I found it very moving, and the movie as a whole funny and heartfelt. It moved me without making me feel as if I'd been hit over the head or preached to--and it made me laugh. Very good movie with some pretty good performances--the best I thought from Anna Kendrick.


Tue Feb 14, 2012 1:16 pm
Post Re: 50/50
Bones wrote:
Major Aphasia wrote:
Levitt is a better actor than his performance in 50/50 would ever have us know. His character's most interesting personality quirk is that he's possibly dying. That may be his only characteristic. Blame the writer, blame the director or blame Levitt -- the character is a vanilla bean with a tumor.

Wait, was that not the point of the character? He's as normal a dude as you can possibly get. He produces radio segments and he's pretty lazy about it. He jogs to stay in shape and he chews his fingernails. He has an overbearing mom and he tends to date overbearing women. He's fairly witty in a low key way and he recycles. He's meant to be a normal dude learning to deal head-on with a tough situation.

As for the car scene, I found it very moving, and the movie as a whole funny and heartfelt. It moved me without making me feel as if I'd been hit over the head or preached to--and it made me laugh. Very good movie with some pretty good performances--the best I thought from Anna Kendrick.


Much of what you mention as evidence of normalcy is rooted in the script and not in the performance. I could have phrased the perceived flaw better: Levitt is a drone in the role. For the story to have impact, it's best to have an honezt-to-goodnezs guy suffer... Levitt is just a few script qualities in motion. I might be wrong. And that's okay.

Kendrick was fine. Likeable but a little to Cera-ish for me. Rogen and Huston were good in their roles.


Tue Feb 14, 2012 4:53 pm
Post Re: 50/50
Major Aphasia wrote:
Much of what you mention as evidence of normalcy is rooted in the script and not in the performance. I could have phrased the perceived flaw better: Levitt is a drone in the role. For the story to have impact, it's best to have an honezt-to-goodnezs guy suffer... Levitt is just a few script qualities in motion. I might be wrong. And that's okay.

Ah, OK. That makes more sense. I don't agree with it; I think he was good in an everydude sort of way. I thought he did a good job of bringing out the sort of "coasting through life" aspect of the character.


Tue Feb 14, 2012 10:26 pm
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