I Love You, Man
**1/2 out of ****
Many critics have dubbed this movie a "bromance" or "bromantic comedy." Well, that's because that's exactly what it is.
I Love You, Man is a love story of friendship between two straight men. There is also a love story of a man and a woman, but that is almost secondary. It is also a comedy from the Judd Apatow school of film. It stars Paul Rudd as Peter and Jason Segel as Sydney. Peter just got engaged to Zooey (Rashida Jones, who you'll recognize from The Office), the woman of his dreams, but quickly realizes he has no male friends to be his best man. Thus starts the comedic montages of Peter's misadventures in trying to find a friend. He eventually meets Sydney, basically the coolest guy in the world, and they become instant buddies. A problem develops when Zooey thinks Peter is spending too much time with his new best friend. The funny supporting cast include Jon Favreau and Jaime Pressly as an oddball couple and Lou Ferrigno as himself.
The film is predictable, with a few belly laughs here and there, but its real charm lies in Rudd's performance as a complete dweeb who tries too hard to connect with the guys. It seems like he's improvising most of his lines, because he probably is.
This film marks the beginning of a new era in romantic comedies, a genre before now mostly limited to chick flicks, but now stepping out to appeal to guys as well. (Films like Knocked Up were early pioneers in this department, but they were marketed mostly to guys, while this film is directed towards everybody.) Like most chick flicks, this film is unremarkable, but not terrible or even inherently bad. It delivers the laughs and the (scant) tears in an entertaining way, which makes it a great date movie, even if you're not going with a date. Like Peter and Sydney do in the movie, make this a man-date.
I would recommend this movie to fans of the stars and to fans of Judd Apatow movies like The 40 Year Old Virgin, and people who like simple comedies.
You can watch the trailer here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mNElMm8otiM