If you want to laugh out loud, then this is the movie for you. This is 40 is a sequel of sorts to Knocked Up, following the lives of the characters Pete and Debbie from that story as they turn 40. It is also another in a now long line of comedies from Judd Apatow. I had started growing tired of the Apatow formula, but This is 40 contains enough laughs to more than compensate.
Pete and Debbie (Paul Rudd & Leslie Mann) are both about to turn 40 and suffer the cliched mid-life crisis that is supposed to accompany it. The writing is on the wall, Pete’s record company is not doing well and he’s in financial trouble, while his wife Debbie is trying to change everything about their lives in complete denial that she’s getting old. This is 40 is 134 minutes of their collective break down.
It’s a pretty simple situation, but the film puts a lot of effort into fleshing out Paul and Debbie, their relationship and their extended families. It’s a character driven comedy if you will. The film shifts constantly between the drama of these characters lives and its laugh out loud moments. If you’re familiar with any Judd Apatow movie you’ll know that this is pretty much par for the course, but there are some very genuine laughs.
Like most American comedies it never quite gets past its serious moments and with a running time over two hours it does overstay its welcome. This is the kind of movie you’ll want to see if you want to forget your own problems for a while and laugh at someone else’s. There are also few interesting cameo’s, and fans of Apatow’s other projects will note some of those more than others.
This is 40 is worth a look for the laughs, but you could do better with your money if you want to wait until this is on DVD.