I Love You, Man 

GENRE: Comedic bromance

THE PITCH: After straightlaced Realtor Peter Klaven (Paul Rudd) pops the question to his girlfriend (Rashida Jones), he realizes he has no male buddies and resolves to meet a potential best man. But will free-spirited Syndey Fife (Jason Segel) be his BFF, or wreak havoc in his career and relationship?

Peter projectile-vomits on a macho acquaintance (Jon Favreau). Peter receives an unexpected open-mouthed kiss from one of his "man-dates." Peter and Sydney engage in over-the-top jam sessions in Sydney's garage "man cave." Peter attempts to strike a James Bond pose in his wedding tux. Sydney offers Peter some humiliating help as an attempted career boost.

BEST RUNNING JOKE: Peter struggles with masculine banter and nicknames, causing him to stammer nonsensical, would-be Jack Black-isms such as, "Totally! Totes McGoats!"

GROSSEST LINE: His father (J.K. Simmons) explains that Peter always gravitated to girls more than boys due to early puberty: "I remember taking him swimming at 12 years old. Kid had a bush like a 40-year-old Serbian."

POP REFERENCES: Peter tries to sell Lou Ferrigno's mansion, leading to many, many jokes about "The Incredible Hulk." Peter and Sydney argue over the pronunciation of the Johnny Depp movie Chocolat. Characters do impressions of "Saturday Night Live" and The Princess Bride characters. Peter's work rival claims that M. Night Shyamalan (director of The Village) photographed his brochure headshot.

FUTURE MUSIC DOWNLOADS: As giant Rush fans, Peter and Sydney sing a hilariously terrible version of "Tom Sawyer" and a less terrible version of "Limelight." Rush sings its own "Limelight" during a concert scene. Incidentally, the Bonedaddys' laid-back "Waterslide" may be Venice Beach's new anthem.

PRODUCT PLACEMENT: Heineken and iPhones quite clearly prove to be the characters' beers and cell phones of choice. Peter defends Sunday HBO as date night with his fiancée by claiming, "It's not TV, it's HBO." "Lost" Season Two DVDs figure into a man-man break-up scene.

MOST UNDERRATED PERFORMER: "Saturday Night Live's" Jane Curtin has a welcome appearance as Peter's mother, but gets nothing funny to do. Even Ferrigno appears more.

SIX DEGREES OF APATOW: Ubiquitous comedic filmmaker Judd Apatow doesn't have his name on this one, but Rudd and Segel acted in such Apatow productions as Knocked Up and Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Director John Hamburg helmed episodes of Apatow's sitcom "Undeclared."

HEY, WAIT A MINUTE: Isn't this a lot like "The Boyfriend," that 1992 "Seinfeld" episode with Keith Hernandez?

THE BOTTOM LINE: I Love You, Man has flaws, including a perfunctory setup, thin female roles and too much attachment to improvised goof-off scenes. Nevertheless, Rudd and Segel make a funny comedic team and the film examines the amusing but real hurdles for male-male friendship and the need for boundaries in all relationships. The best romantic comedy in months turns out to be about two straight guys.


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Recent Comments

  • Re: Fresh air

    • Local band Manchester Orchestra, who provided the soundtrack, probably would have appreciated a shout-out.

    • on June 29, 2016
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