>> Superbad (John’s Review, 7.5/10)

Superbad poster Bolting from the gate fully formed, as if the characters Seth (Jonah Hill) and Evan (Michael Cera) have always existed, and we’re just along for one pivotal night in their lives, Superbad is the latest king of the hill in the tried-and-true teen sex comedy genre. The film favors Kevin Smith-style vulgar dialogue over actual sexual activity with arguably the most believable cast of kids a film like this has ever seen. It took me a while to adjust to seeing kids this young talk so abrasively, and it didn’t help that the movie begins raunchier than it ends. Seth and Evan seem obsessed with hooking up with a couple of their female classmates before Evan is scooted off to college with their third wheel friend, Fogell (Christopher Mintz-Plasse). Fogell procures a fake ID with the conspicuous one-word name “McLovin”, and what starts as Evan and Seth’s commitment to bring some alcohol to a killer party using Fogell’s new identity, becomes a high school nightmare of cops, arguments, fights, jealousy, guns, drunk sex, and cheap beer swilled from empty detergent bottles.

Grounding all these antics is the very real relationship that Seth and Evan have. They are best friends in an almost symbiotic sense, seemingly incapable of existing without the friendship of the other. The performances feel very natural, no matter how wacky things get, and I think it’s what really sells the film, especially in the third act. This is a movie that gets better as it goes along, investing the audience in the comedy by creating central characters that you like–funny, but in a real way.

Superbad is a delicate balance of raunchy and sweet, never tipping too far over into one or the other. I wholly expect a Superbad 2 within a couple of years, and as long as it’s more of the same, but set in college, I’m perfectly fine with that.

7.5 on a 1 to 10 scale

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