I’ll start off by saying I love Family Guy. I understand why some people don’t like it, but I do. And when it was announced that Seth MacFarlance was doing a movie I was all for it. Now that Ted has finally hit British shores, but does it match up to the quality of its small screen cousin?
The story is pretty simple, but not so bland that you can predict the entire plot. It sticks to the basic template of the buddy movie/rom-com, but it remains fresh because of the lunacy of some of the situations these characters get into. This film was made by a guy who regularly breaks up scenes with fights with a giant chicken, remember? The film is quite limited in size and scope, but I don’t have a problem with that. MacFarlane fares better when its more about the character gags, even if the bigger moments still deliver. My main problem is that the antagonists of the film seem a bit forced in; it’s like the writers suddenly realised “Shit! We need a big climax! Let’s just create a character, give him two scenes prior, and then make him the villain”. It didn’t take away from the film too much as the bad guys are still funny, but I feel that the climax should have felt more natural.
The performances here are nothing to write home about, but they service the script well. Mark Wahlberg works here as a likeable protagonist and fits into the wackiness even if it looks like he doesn’t always know what’s going on (then again, I’ve seen Marky Mark in roles he definitely didn’t belong in. *cough* Max Payne! *cough* ). Mila Kunis is good here too; she could have easily fallen into making this character completely unlikable due to wanting Ted to leave, but she remains fun and avoids the stereotype. MacFarlane himself voices Ted and, while it’s clear he’s running out of voices to us (they even point it out!), he still remains a laugh riot throughout. Almost every line that comes out of his mouth is a gag, and most of them hit. The supporting cast is also good and filled with plenty of MacFarlane regulars and some surprise cameos. I won’t spoil any of them, but one of them is The Saviour of the Universe. Wink wink nudge nudge!
But what’s the most important thing about a comedy? Oh yeah, the comedy! Don’t worry, Ted has more than enough of those. If you know MacFarlane’s sense of humour, you’ll fall easily into this. The jokes come fast, in your face and never stop. Some do miss their targets, but no comedy has perfect aim and the misses are never huge bombs. Again, I don’t want to give away any jokes but you’ll find your fair share of pop culture references, toilet humour and even those good old non-sequiters. Man, don’t you just love it when they stop to do something that has noting to do with anything?
Anyway, you’ll certain laugh at this movie more than my painful attempts at comedy in this review.
Ted is by no means a perfect movie and there are certainly better comedies out there, but it delivers on exactly what it promise and never stops until the end.