4 ½ stars
In a word: Ribald
There is an unacceptable trend amongst comedies, the most egregious culprits of this trend being the R-rated comedies. The trend: compensating for a lack of depth, story and character development with an overabundance of generally stale albeit edgy humor. This is how R-rated comedies fool you into thinking they’re worth the price of admission.
Thankfully, Bad Neighbours bucks this trend and delivers the funniest film of the last year and the most expertly assembled and executed comedy since The Hangover.
It has wonderfully sharp dialogue and fantastic acting. The comedy is handled brilliantly, spread effectively across the film and the characters. The film’s pace is near perfect, constantly flowing but never hurried. Plus the film still manages to hit the audience with more than a few surprises, both on comedic and dramatic levels.
MVP goes to Rose Byrne (Damages, X-Men: First Class), but Zac Efron (Are We Officially Dating?) will surprise more than a few doubters with his acting chops and range. Someone pass on the memo to his agent – less of The Lucky One and Charlie St Cloud roles, more of this. Seth Rogen (Knocked Up, This Is The End) is still Seth Rogen, and for fans of The Mindy Project, we get to enjoy series regular Ike Barinholtz in a very Morgan-esque role. Lisa Kudrow (Friends, Web Therapy) is also brilliant in her minor role.
Reviewer: David Thomas Williams