Monday, August 27, 2007

Superbad The Movie - juvenile perverted gross out film? Or master class in dialogue?

Here's my confession - I love juvenile perverted gross out films - but only when they have the heart behind them that this one does. Superbad is so gross at times but there's such a nougaty ribbon of sweetness in just about every scene, that it is utterly redeemed and becomes a hilarious romance between two friends. (Seriously, it's a romance.)

But what's really amazing about this film - and about most of the films Judd Apatow is involved with is the dialogue. The dialogue doesn't just get characters from A to B - in fact it rarely does that. It goes from A, circles B zigzags near C and ends up back at A. But somehow plot is forwarded, subplots meet up but every single time a character opens their mouth - the words reveal and stay true to character. Which seems like a no brainer - but think of the books we read - wherein there needs to be a lot of information revealed - say, about a 11th Century political situation involving a King and some marauding oh...vikings. (Were there Vikings in 11th century - Margaret?) Or, a serial killer with unknown motive but some disgusting calling cards. Often times we get lazy - and we just dump that information. Just put it out there in one big chunk. Case in point - I have a character reading a newspaper article to three people very emotionally involved in what that article says - and right now she's just reading it and they are just listening to it. That's all. Strictly information. I can do better than that. I should do better than that.

Superbad elevates dialogue - makes it what it should be. And the kid from Arrested Development sings in it. What more could you want?


Anonymous said...

I love, love, love Judd Apatow and Seth Rogen, so am really excited to see Superbad..
Knocked up was amazing for so many reasons. Amazing dialogue, the sister of the heroine(Judd's wife,) Paul Rudd, I could go on and on.

Maureen McGowan said...

I agree about the dialogue in this movie. The other thing that really struck me about it is that it's not cliche. I mean, it sounds like it should be, but it's not. All the laughs come from character, not silly set up situations. And all the silly situations come out of the characters doing things. You don't see the writers going "oh, yeah, and then this could happen, wouldn't that be funny? How can we make that happen."

I love that Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg (writers) called the main characters Seth and Evan. Nothing like not hiding the fact that it's based on them, eh! (Anyone else see the photo of them in the Globe a few weeks ago holding hands? They said they started writing the screenplay in high school.)

Margaret Moore said...

Vikings? Oh, you betcha! One reason Harold lost the Battle of Hastings in 1066 was that he'd just fought off an army of Norwegians at the Battle of Stamford Bridge and then rushed south to fight William. His troops were pooped!

Anonymous said...

I was determined to hate Superbad.
Instead I laughed my a$$ off during the entire movie.
I loved it.

Lil Lex said...

Superbad rocks! I was going to write a review on my blog, but I got busy, and then I got lazy :(

The holy trinity:
- 40 year old virgin
- Knocked up
- Superbad

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