MOVIE REVIEW - Neighbors

on 12 May 2014.

Seth Rogen and Zac Efron are together in the new raunchy comedy, Neighbors is out in a big way this week. A huge opening weekend of about 52 million dollars.

This is no Animal House, but there are some pretty funny moments in this movie. Clearly, this was inspired by the 1970's classic, as a bad boy college fraternity is facing expulsion and cause huge trouble in the neighborhood.   But, this goes places that Animal House never could because of the era, or did because of peoples' tolerance.  Times have changed.

This is the story of Mac (Rogen), and Kelly (Rose Byrne). They are a young married couple that have a little baby girl.  Then a frat moves in next door to them, with Teddy (Efron) as its president.   Mac and Kelly are concerned that the frat will make too much noise, and cause general havoc in the quiet area. So they try to befriend the boys by partying with them.  And they succeed. Then one night as the boys are out of control, they call the police on them, the worm turns, and now they are not the friends they once were.  So the battle of gags is on, to see who will eventually win the battle.  That's as deep as this goes.

First off, there are plenty of laughs here.   But before we dive in there, there is some funny parody here as well.   They do a very good job of lampooning modern young parenting that goes on today.  I also thought at times this made funny commentary on millennials in general and their lifestyle.  There are some really funny sight gags that are great laughs. Trouble is, they would have been far funnier if we hadn't seen them in the trailers for 6 months beforehand.  There is much that will make you laugh in this movie.

But much of this movie is fairly raunchy and sophomoric.   Rogen, who is funny, continues to deepen his bond with his audience with more heavy drug recreational drug use, and drinking himself into a coma.  Plus, the continued, and almost agonizing infatuation with private body parts, is starting to get a bit concerning.   But he as much as anyone knows what tons of his core want to laugh at and think is funny.  And he continues to give it to them. This is a hard R rated movie.  Sadly, there are a few scenes here that will cross the line for some.  They do go for shock factor a time or two, and they get it.  You might want to leave Nana at home.  There are a few scenes that are beyond tasteless.

This movie though is wonderfully cast.   Rogen is pretty darn funny as the 35 ish year old Mac, and Efron is really beliveable as the up-to-no-good Teddy.  I especially thought Rose Byrne was hilarious at times as the in over-her-head Kelly.  There by and large is no supporting cast to mention, as this is a big ensemble cast beyond our stars.  The one thing this movie does very well is show just how fast things change in our world today.  The frat thinks that our couple is old, and that they are young. It also showcases that the generation gap that exists today, is between people far closer in age than in days gone by.  That was pretty funny as well.

Neighbors.  Yeah it's funny at times, but an acquired taste -  not for all.

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