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Dan the Man's Movie Reviews

All my aimless thoughts, ideas, and ramblings, all packed into one site!

Ted (2012)


If only I could get my plush doll Spider-Man to start talking and doing cool shit.

The film centers on a 35-year-old man (Mark Wahlberg) who must deal with the cherished teddy bear (voiced by Seth MacFarlane) who came to life as the result of a childhood wish… and has refused to leave his side ever since.

The one reason why I wasn’t really looking forward to this film as much was mainly because it’s the directorial debut of Seth MacFarlane, aka the creator of Family Guy, aka a show I’m not too fond of. I don’t know what it is about me and that show, but I just don’t find it all that funny and consider other animated-shows like Futurama or South Park to be a lot funnier and wittier when it comes to their jokes. But somehow, I caught myself laughing….a lot.

The idea of having a pot-smoking, foul-mouthed teddy bear seemed like something that would be funny for the first 10 minutes, then just falter out after that and get boring, but somehow, MacFarlane doesn’t allow that to happen mainly because he’s allowed to do whatever the hell he wants with this material. That’s right, no FCC, no rules, and no standards to live by, he’s allowed to do whatever the eff he wants to do with this story and he obviously is enjoying this newly-found freedom because almost every scene is filled with fart jokes, poop jokes, sex jokes, gay jokes, pot jokes, and plenty of other jokes raunchy jokes that you can shake a stick at.

But the difference here with all of these raunchy jokes in this movie, from say, another raunch-fest like That’s My Boy, is that this film actually has some cleverness behind all of the raunch. It’s not just all about making people go “ewww” or squirm at the sight of a dude’s penis, it’s all about making people laugh their asses off at something dirty, but something that’s also very funny and witty. They do the same thing in The Hangover and even though that film and this one are somewhat different from one another, they both show you can still be clever, even if a good majority of the jokes are centered around dudes smoking pot and farting.

However, it’s not all about being dirty that makes this film funny, no, there’s actually plenty of other funny stuff going on that doesn’t concern any bodily fluids. There’s a couple of great movie references to such flicks as Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Van Wilder (random, I know), Superman Returns (another random one), Airplane!, and even the 80’s cult classic, Flash Gordon, which actually plays a big part in this film as well. There are plenty of other references here that I’m sure I forgot to mention but it’s also still the same exact kind of snarky humor from Family Guy and that confused me because I laughed at just about everything here, but I barely ever laugh at that show. Maybe it’s just the foul language that makes everything funnier. Oh yeah, there’s also a reference to that show as well that seemed clever. Once again, I’m using that word “clever” in a review of a movie that’s about a talking bear.

Probably the best, and worst thing about this movie, is in fact Ted, the CG bear voiced by Seth MacFarlane. It’s obvious that Ted was going to pretty much steal every single scene, but what really got to me was just how consistently funny this freakin’ character was. Sometimes when you have certain characters like this, they are very funny at points but miss the mark at others, Ted, just about made me laugh each and every single time he opened up his stitched mouth. Not only did he have the best lines in the movie (obviously) but some of his insults that he flings at almost everybody around him were sometimes so mean and cruel, that I couldn’t believe I still liked him in the end. MacFarlane, of course, does a great job with this voice-role and it’s actually surprising just how good Ted, the CG bear actually looks in this film. I don’t want to go as far to say that he looked freakin’ realistic along the lines of Caesar in Rise of the Planet of the Apes, but I really couldn’t find a single flaw in the animation they had made for him/it.

Sadly though, Ted is such a great and funny character to have on-screen that whenever he isn’t the film falters and definitely isn’t as funny as you would have liked it to be. It’s not like the rest of the cast isn’t game, because they sure as hell are, it’s just that you laugh so much at Ted and all of the crazy shit he says, that whenever he isn’t around you’re left wondering where he is and what he’s up to. Maybe MacFarlane focused on writing so much funny stuff for his own character, that he sort of left the others all in the dust.

Also, the flick starts to get less funny by the end and lose its originality points when the story starts to dive into Ted getting his ass captured by a childhood admirer of his (another crazy role for Giovanni Ribisi, maybe his weirdest, and that’s say something). I get it, they needed to bring this story-line in to give it some tension by the end, but Ribisi’s character is sort of forgotten about for a good hour or so that when he comes back, we just don’t give a crapola and just want Ted to go back to smoking pot, having sex with chicks, and doing coke. You know, the fun stuff.

But as good as MacFarlane may be as Ted, Mark Wahlberg still shows that he’s great at doing comedy, once again with his role here as John Bennett. Wahlberg is great at delivering comedy but mostly at playing the straight-man, which he does here perfectly and it definitely helps out a lot of the scenes whenever Ted isn’t around and it’s just Wahlberg, being Wahlberg, which isn’t a bad thing because it’s obvious this guy is having a ball with this role. Mila Kunis is also pretty funny as Lori and shows that she still has some great comedic timing to her as well, and I like how they didn’t make her character one of those bitchy-types that hate on their mans for having another friend that get’s in the way of their “alone time”. Nope, she’s actually a pretty cool chick that just wants a guy who wants to settle down. Typical woman, that’s why I’m done getting married after three unsuccessful attempts. Or maybe it’s four?

Consensus: Even though it starts to lose some flavor in the last act, Ted is still a very funny and raunchy comedy that shows off MacFarlane in a new light. It’s a new light where he’s able to say, do, and act whatever he wants and not have to give a crap at all, who say’s he’s not allowed to. Still, doesn’t mean I’m going to start watching a becoming a fan boy of Family Guy. Not a chance in hell, my friend.

7.5/10=Matinee!!

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26 responses to “Ted (2012)

  1. abifilms June 30, 2012 at 7:38 am

    Reblogged this on abifilms © and commented:
    See this hasn’t been properly advertised over here!! Argh the frustrations over how long we Britis have to wait for transatlantic films to come over :(

  2. Scott June 30, 2012 at 10:50 am

    Though I do like Family Guy on the rare occasion when it’s insults are so insulting they’re clever (there’s that word again), I wasn’t expecting much from this film. But I’ve heard from a whole bunch of other critics, and now you, that it’s actually worth a look. So thanks for the recommendation and I’ll definitely check it out when it hits the dollar theater circuit!

  3. mistylayne June 30, 2012 at 3:59 pm

    Very happy to read a good review of this because I want to see it and was unsure of just how it would play out. I also dig Seth McFarlane. :)

  4. projectfilmrehab June 30, 2012 at 8:39 pm

    Great review. It looks pretty good from the trailer and I do like Family Guy, so really glad to see you enjoyed the film. I can’t wait to see this one.

  5. sati June 30, 2012 at 11:44 pm

    Awesome review! Glad this one is funny. I too am not fond of Family Guy – I prefer South Park though the last season of it was a massive disappointment.

  6. Candice Frederick (@ReelTalker) July 1, 2012 at 12:46 am

    well, i’m happy to hear giovanni ribisi is in the movie. he’s usually excellent. the rest of the movie looks asinine, but you seem overall happy with it. and i’ve never even seen family guy, but you’re the first person i’ve heard who watches it and doesn’t really like it.

  7. JMack July 1, 2012 at 6:00 pm

    I heard this movie was suppose to be the grown up version of Stewie and Rupert from Family Guy the TV show. Do you think that is accomplished in this film?

  8. Christopher Long July 2, 2012 at 7:15 pm

    I just saw “Ted” this morning. As usual, Dan, you make numerous spot-on observations. Typically, I’m no longer interested in trash-type crap such as this. However, you’re absolutely right in that it is VERY CLEVER and well-written trash-type crap. In fact, I was also making similar comparisons to “The Hang Over.” Oddly, I liked the movie even more than you did. I’m an old man who has just about seen it all and I’d give “Ted” an enthusiastic “9.” Keep up the good work Dan!

  9. r361n4 July 2, 2012 at 7:31 pm

    Great review, I definitely think it’s interesting that you liked the humor in this movie but don’t care for Family Guy. I do see it though, the jokes in Ted were all in the same vein as FG but were a bit “subtler” (a word that also seems odd when describing a movie about a talking bear, lol) Anyways I recognize that some of the humor relies too much on references but I can’t help but love it when the reference is to something I actually know and love

    Feel free to check out my review of Ted and happy blogging :)

    http://rorschachreviews.com/2012/07/02/ted-review/

    • CMrok93 July 8, 2012 at 11:51 pm

      Thanks my man! The references are what I really liked about this flick because I got most of them, and whenever they were used, they made my ass laugh.

  10. T0mo July 2, 2012 at 8:58 pm

    looking forward to this one opening in the UK looks funny as hell, Cracking review

  11. Ethan July 4, 2012 at 7:30 pm

    It was a bit long, but also hilarious! One of the top 2 comedies of the year (the other being 21 Jump Street). Good review Dan! Here’s mine…

    http://ethanunscripted.blogspot.com/2012/07/crude-cuddly.html

  12. Tim The Film Guy July 5, 2012 at 1:52 pm

    You better be right, the reviews so far are looking ok to good so hmm :D

  13. Eric July 9, 2012 at 1:13 am

    Good review, Dan. It sounds like we have similar thoughts on this one. While some of the jokes fell flat, there were enough hilarious gags that kept me laughing. Definitely one of this year’s biggest surprises.

  14. Logan Burd January 2, 2013 at 3:02 pm

    You said it perfectly, the story could have become boring in 10 minutes but MacFarlane kept it hilarious for 100!

    http://burdseyeviews.com/2013/01/01/ted-2012/

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