"Dirty Jokes and Then More Dirty Jokes"
What You Need To Know:
The characters in this movie are often humorous. At times it even becomes touching as they explore why their relationships split apart. However, the filmmakers choose raunchy visuals, blasphemous jokes, and continual discussion of sex as the source of their humor instead of doing the harder work of solid character comedy. There are numerous graphic sex scenes as well as full frontal male nudity, which is played for laughs. A secondary story is of newlyweds who, because of their “religion,” haven’t had sexual relations before they were married, so the groom gets lessons from the amoral Aldous. We really don’t need any more sex comedies like this one.
(HH, AbAb, B, LLL, V, SSS, NNN, A, DD, M) Strong humanist worldview with strong anti-biblical, anti-Christian, blasphemous elements but one man calls out to God to help him during possible life or death situation; at least 66 obscenities and eight profanities, plus numerous references to body parts and blasphemous “jokes”; mild fist fight; extreme portrayal of sex many times with multiple characters, numerous sex jokes as sex is simulated in a music video with a nun and other characters and a “demonstration” of how to do sex on the beach with a number of objects, plus illicit sex is the dominant theme of the movie; full frontal male nudity in multiple occasions, male and female upper nudity, nude backsides, numerous bikini and bedroom scenes; alcohol consumed, though one character refuses since he’s a recovering alcoholic; minor joke reference to illegal drugs; and, cheating on a romantic partner and ruining a person’s reputation by posting a lewd photo in a public place.
FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL is the story of Peter Bretter (Jason Segel) who is dumped by his famous actress girlfriend Sarah Marshall (Kristen Bell) and then ends up sharing a week in Hawaii with her and her new boyfriend, a well-known singer named Aldous Snow (Russell Brand). Peter is a depressed musician who has given up on his dreams and instead composes music for his girlfriend’s detective show. He tries to cope with the loss of his girlfriend and in the end gets a renewed hope to pursue his passions in life.
The characters in this movie are often humorous and at times it even becomes touching as they explore why their relationships broke off. However, the filmmakers choose raunchy visuals, blasphemous jokes, and continual discussion of sex as the source of their humor instead of doing the harder work of solid character comedy.
FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL contains numerous sex scenes with graphic portrayal of the characters in the act as well as full frontal male nudity, which is played for laughs. A secondary story is of a young couple on their honeymoon who, because of their “religion,” haven’t had intercourse before they were married and the groom has to get lessons from the amoral Aldous. God, Jesus and religion in general are mocked, and there is one extremely blasphemous, distasteful joke. The funniest portions are actually the clips from Sarah’s TV show, which are played as parodies of the forensic science genre.
The worldview, when the filmmakers aren’t being anti-Christian, mentions God mostly when swearing. However, it’s interesting to note that when Peter is about to fall off a cliff into the ocean, he prays to God to let him live. This underscores the fact that no matter what, we all have the “God-shaped hole” which author Blaise Pascal wrote about.
The movie is well paced and there are some solid comedic moments. Jason Segel as the melancholic Peter delivers a very good performance and will more than likely be the breakout star of this movie. He’s also the writer of the film. The self-absorbed Aldous character is comically played well by Russell Brand. The production elements are solid to good and in all, it’s a competently produced Hollywood movie. But, do we really need more sex comedy movies? Is seeing a naked man really the only way to get jokes? C. S. Lewis wrote in SCREWTAPE LETTERS in the voice of a senior devil instructing his nephew that humans sometimes like dirty jokes because life is humorous and sex is a part of life. However, he goes on to say that there are also humans who like dirty humor simply because it’s an occasion to talk about sex. FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL clearly falls into the latter category.
Relationships can make for solid humor and there are many good movies doing that. MOVIEGUIDE® has an abundance of more positive movies mentioned on the website, www.movieguide.org. As to FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL, viewers are advised to, well, simply forget it.
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