I love Seth Rogen. I'm not sure why, but I absolutely love Seth Rogen films. But I feel like his past few films have been lacking something, I'm not sure what, but they have been lacking something. Neighbors was pretty much garbage (Neighbors 2 looks just as bad), The Interview was funny though it could have been so much more, and This Is The End, while it was super meta, lacked in so many aspects-too cliche for its own good, and riddled with comedy sufficiently low-brow. Last night I viewed the film The Night Before and I must say, "Seth Rogen is finally back."
Simply put, this film is about three friends ending a 14 year tradition this Christmas Eve, and their emotional journeys through the individual problems they face while trying to remain friends. It must be said this is one of the funniest and saddest films I have seen in a while. It's written and directed by Jonathan Levine, who directed a film with a very similar feel to it 50/50.
Franco and Yeezy.
The Night Before, filmed under the guise X-mas, stands out for many many reasons. The first thing that sets this film apart from the rest is Seth Rogen's, and my, love for Kanye and James Franco (go ahead hate on me for liking Kanye). Kanye + a reference to Big = comedy gold.
The leading ladies!
This film is heavy on the male protagonists, but the ladies of the film, are hands down the show stoppers. Jillian Bell, Lizzy Caplan, and Mindy Kaling are the real screen stealers in this film. The chemistry shared between Lizzy Caplan and JGL is incredible, you truly feel that they are supposed to be together! Jillian Bell and Seth Rogen seemingly match each other in emotion at all times, and I personally think those two have the best acting chops in the entire film.
That church scene.
Anyone who has seen this film will understand what someone means when they say, "that church scene." This scene deserves to be hailed as the best Seth-Rogen-is-high-scenes he has ever done. Filled up on drugs and some out of left field Jewish guilt, his reasoning is that Jewish people killed Jesus and he is in the middle of midnight mass wearing a sweatshirt with the Star of David on it-this scene will have you rolling on the floor and crying with laughter.
Dem supporting characters.
This film has two great roles in it that must be mentioned: Michael Shannon and Miley Cyrus. Michael Shannon plays the mysterious drug dealer who delivers drugs to our protagonists, but he also happens to be a former teacher of the guys. Our characters all have an individual experience with Mr. Green (Shannon), each is uniquely different from the last, although Seth Rogen's experience is definitely the funniest. Then there is Miley Cyrus, who cannot act. But she didn't need to act because she was playing Miley Cyrus. I guess there is supposed to be a joke there. JGL runs into Miley when he is trying to win back the love of his life, who just so happens to be a YUGE fan of the song Wrecking Ball. Which leads to this movie moment that would NEVER ever happen in real life:
The Night Before hits your funny bone, and then immediately makes you sad. You laugh with their joy, and you feel for their pain. I think anyone who has a friend group similar to this can relate with one of these characters, do you?