Universal/Columbia/Relativity Media (Judd Apatow, Clayton
Townsend & Barry Mendel)
USA 🇺🇸 2009
W: Judd Apatow
DP: Janusz Kaminski
Ed: Brent White & Craig Alpert
Mus: Michael Andrews & Jason Schwartzman
Adam Sandler (George Simmons), Seth Rogen (Ira Wright), Leslie
Mann (Laura), Eric Bana (Clarke), Jonah Hill (Leo Koenig), Jason Schwarzman (Mark Taylor Jackson)
The film opens with a younger Adam Sandler making relentless
prank phone calls (courtesy of home video footage taken by writer/director Judd Apatow when the two were roommates). It's his usual schtick, yet Funny People manages to be amongst Sandler's most
He's perfectly cast here as an obnoxious, arrogant stand-up
comedian with a massive fanbase (so basically playing himself), but when he receives the news that he's suffering from a potentially terminal blood disease, he hires a young, struggling comedy
writer (Seth Rogen) to pen some new material for him.
This is basically The Great Gatsby, relocated to the world of
stand-up comedy, and while the performances are good and the stand-up scenes have some well-written humour, the rest of the film isn't so funny.
The length of the film isn't particularly kind either,
especially when there's a lot of filler consisting of in-jokes between the director and his cast of friends which the audience may not be privy to.
Enjoyable, but not the stand-up comedy epic that Apatow
intended it to be.