This Is 40 (15)

Film

Comedy

From left, Maude Apatow, Iris Apatow, Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann in This Is 40

Time Out rating:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>3</span>/5

User ratings:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>3</span>/5
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Time Out says

Tue Feb 12 2013

They should invent a new rating for Judd Apatow’s new mid-life crisis comedy. Its 15 certificate doesn’t cut it. What’s needed is a 35 cert and a warning: ‘Contains scenes likely to disturb audiences not yet in their thirties.’ Seriously, watching a married couple having his ’n’ hers meltdowns might be enough to put you off the whole find-a-mate, settle-down shebang for ever.

This is ‘a sort-of sequel’ to ‘Knocked Up’ – the movie that earned Apatow his ‘king of comedy’ reputation. Seth Rogen and Katherine Heigl are nowhere to be seen. Instead, we pick up with Pete (Paul Rudd) and his wife, Debbie (Leslie Mann), in the week they both turn 40. To the outside world, Pete, Debbie and their daughters are living the dream (mansion-sized house, personal trainers, iPhones, iPads, iEverything). Trouble is Pete’s record label is close to bankruptcy (he’s the guy who turned down Arcade Fire, his assistant reminds him). Debbie is in denial, putting the family on a wheat-free, wi-fi-free diet. And they’re driving each other nuts.

So this is 40, is it? Well, for a tiny corner of super-rich Los Angeles maybe. It’s Apatow’s most personal film yet, with an autobiographical edge. What’s more, Mann, who plays Debbie, is Apatow’s wife. Their daughters play Pete and Debbie’s two girls. So you can see why some might think Apatow has gone soft or smug. And you might agree: who cares if Pete and Debbie have to move out of their very big house into a not-quite-so-big house?

However irritating ‘This Is 40’ is at times, there’s a warmth that wins you over, and an honesty about families. In one scene, Pete yells at his wife and daughters: ‘Sometimes I wish just one of you had a dick.’ Apatow also gets in some digs at the new generation’s mid-life crisis toys. Pete is a middle-aged man in Lycra on a bicycle – like those guys who watched the Tour de France last year, spent a grand on a bike and now think they’re Bradley Wiggins.

Its worst crime is its length: ‘This Is 40’ has no business running more than two hours. It’s padded with plots and contrivances, including unnecessary scenes with Pete and Debbie’s dads to explain their hang-ups (we get it: parents fuck you up). As a producer (‘Anchorman’, ‘Bridesmaids’) Apatow’s MO is making funny funnier, amping up the comedy. You wonder if he could have done with someone returning the favour. And the appearance of a new generation of comedy talent in supporting roles – Lena Dunham, Chris O’Dowd (pictured) and Melissa McCarthy – is a gentle reminder that being king of anything in Hollywood isn’t a job for life.

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Release details

Rated:

15

UK release:

Thu Feb 14, 2013

Duration:

133 mins

Cast and crew

Director:

Judd Apatow

Cast:

Leslie Mann, Paul Rudd, Maude Apatow, Iris Apatow

Users say

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5

Average User Rating

3.8 / 5

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Eddie Harkin

I watched 'This is 40' with my wife (I am 40 and she is 38). We thought it was a really well made movie. We have 2 girls of similar ages to the girls in the movie so the film to us was very relevant and we found it very funny as we could relate to a lot of it. A must see movie!

Eddie Harkin

I watched 'This is 40' with my wife (I am 40 and she is 38). We thought it was a really well made movie. We have 2 girls of similar ages to the girls in the movie so the film to us was very relevant and we found it very funny as we could relate to a lot of it. A must see movie!