Ahoy, squirts! Quint here. This movie could have gone horribly wrong. Like big time horribly wrong. It could have come across as a vanity project and it would have, too, if Seth Rogen didn’t depict himself and his famous friends as comically inept, petty and a little on the stupid side. Or if it had tried to take itself seriously at all for that matter.
There is a dramatic thread that weaves through the dick, fart and cum jokes, surprisingly enough, but it only serves to make the movie more ridiculous. That thread involves Jay Baruchel trying to keep his friendship with Seth Rogen from falling by the wayside as Rogen’s new LA celebrity friends try to claim him as their own.
And then the apocalypse happens, people are raptured (naturally, none of the actors or comedians ascend to heaven because they’re all awful sinner-filled people) and everything erupts in chaos. The great thing about this flick is that the weirdness builds and builds and builds and just when you think it can’t get any more bizarre Rogen and his life-partner Evan Goldberg go even further into the absurd.
The secret to this movie’s success is that how varied the comedy is. The crass, rude humor makes up the majority of the film (and it’s good, too), but there’s also appropriately subtle referential humor, character humor and some great payoffs to offhand things that are said early on. Dare I say that you can’t successfully make a movie look this dumb without being really smart about it? I dare, I dare!
Having 99% of the cast play themselves (the only people not playing themselves have, like, 3 lines total) must have been incredibly appealing to a lot of these guys because it allows them the ability to poke fun at themselves and their image. Michael Cera probably gets the most mileage out of this. If he’s even a tenth as obnoxious as he plays himself in this movie he’s gotta be the most fascinating guy at any party in a “What’s Cera going to do now?” kind of way.
Rogen and Goldberg take the public persona of these really funny guys and exaggerate them into almost Hirschfeldian proportions. There’s that smart thing I mentioned earlier.
Jonah’s the guy everybody loves and doesn’t have a mean bone in his body, so they turn that up to 11. James Franco is weird and nice and aloof… and did I mention weird? Again, turned up to 11. And what they do with Danny McBride… good lord, he hasn’t been used this well since season one of Eastbound and Down.
Rogen and Goldberg were also smart enough to not waste Craig Robinson, which happens waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too often.
How they gave us exactly what we wanted with these characterizations while still managing to surprise us is beyond me and a real testament to the minds behind this flick.
And they go dirty! Like filthy dirty. Like I almost got embarrassed filthy. Well played, gents. Takes quite a bit of salty talk put some color in these cheeks!
God, what else is there to say without completely just running through every funny gag in the movie? I’ll cut it short. I think the endless TV spots and internet clips have already gotten that covered.
Seriously, though… if you like a good R-rated, foul-mouthed yet still oddly touching and heartfelt bit of hilarity then This Is The End is for you. And as The Gump would put it, that’s all I got to say about that.