Apatow's Funny People: Insightful, Smug, Too Long

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 31, 2009 7:40 AM CDT
Apatow's Funny People : Insightful, Smug, Too Long
Seth Rogen, left, and Aubrey Plaza are shown in a scene from "Funny People."   (AP Photo/Universal Pictures, Tracy Bennett)

Judd Apatow doesn't dispense entirely with his raunchy humor in Funny People, but his venture into more serious themes meets mixed success with critics. Most, however, love Adam Sandler as a gravely ill comedian confronting the emptiness of his life.

  • Peter Travers, Rolling Stone: "Apatow scores by crafting the film equivalent of a stand-up routine that encompasses the joy, pain, anger, loneliness and aching doubt that go into making an audience laugh."
  • Manohla Dargis, New York Times: "There’s something irritatingly self-satisfied about (it), which explains why, though it glances on the perils of fame, it mostly affirms its pleasures."

  • Michael Sragow, Baltimore Sun: The movie has "a smattering of hearty laughs and a career-high performance from" Sandler.
  • Joe Lozito, Big Picture Big Sound: The cast, including Apatow regular Seth Rogen, is "uniformly good" and the movie is "by turns bittersweet and raucously funny," but at a whopping two-and-a-half hours, it's also "one long, meandering mess."
(More Judd Apatow stories.)

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