Atlanta Film Festival New Blog Home

Twitter Updates

Monday, July 28, 2008

Is Seth Rogen the new Steve Martin?

As I've posted on here before, seeing rated R flicks make a comeback is something I endorse wholeheartedly. Step Brothers wasn't a good film--I still laughed quit a bit--but, for totally selfish reasons, I'm glad to see it do $30 million its opening weekend.

A huge reason I'm a fan of the R film is attributable to Steve Martin's early career is a huge reason for that. The Jerk, The Lonely Guy, and The Man With Two Brains are three films that any kid from the 80s most likely remembers with some fondness.

And even at their most silly and absurd, there's a level of technical genius to the humor that's missing now days--just being able to improv ain't enough. When asked what's the best joke, Chris Rock answered the best joke is a written joke. Shooting from the hip is a great quality, but being able to write a joke that works period is a lost art in films.

What's also missing from too many comedies, is that likable everyman/everywoman quality. Gilda Radner was believable doing silly. Gene Wilder was believable. Richard Pryor was believable. Steve Martin was believable. And what all these guys could do was also write and create memorable characters, situations and lines. The Jerk easily has to be in the top 20 most quotable films of all time--and thanks to Carl Reiner, the film is consistently visually funny.

Seth Rogen co-wrote Superbad which put Hill, Cera and Mintz-Plasse in the comedic driver seat. Superbad is chock full of memorable moments and quotable lines. He co-wrote Pineapple Express, which has buzz and it looks to be funny as hell. And Pineapple's trailer already as many standout moments--quote wise and visually, thanks to David Gordon Green and his cinematographer as some the great comedies of the past.

For dudes, Seth is a guy you recognize and want to hang out with. The jokes he tells, you want to listen to. And the situations he gets into, most guys can relate with on some level--even the only in the movie moments, like burning a cop car (it's about the camaraderie...and wanton destruction).

How will we know if Seth is the new Steve? When the remake of Parenthood lands on Seth's desk, we'll know. We'll know.

1 comment:

Lina said...

I found this site called http://URAjerk.com maybe you can use it. It seems to help get me through the issues of dealing with some of the jerks I know. At least I can vent about these jerks, plus I get a kick out of sending them some cards.