Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008)
Establishing an exquisite symmetry between its smart, at times raunchy hilarity and disheartening insight into humanities innermost feelings. Forgetting Sarah Marshall is a true romantic-comedy that is leaps and bounds beyond the genre’s usual trash. First time director Nicholas Stoller does a sublime job and manages to squeeze every last drop of comedic aptitude and emotional range from his tenacious cast. Using the tranquil and breathtaking Hawaii as its backdrop. Forgetting Sarah Marshall is always easy on the eyes whether it’s the scenery or cast, except for one, unexpected and exposed incident😉. Nonetheless, the authentic and unflinching look into the deterioration of relationships that writer Jason Segel has conjured up is something we’ve all experienced at one point or another. Which ultimately allows the audience to laugh uncontrollably at our own vulnerability and self-pity.
Peter Bretter (Segel), a composer, is in a five year relationship with actress Sarah Marshall (Bell). Upon returning home from a shoot, Sarah ends the relationship with Peter. Unable to cope with the abrupt ending, Peter decides to go on a vacation to Hawaii. At the resort, Peter soon meets Rachel (Kunis), the hotel concierge. Upon finding out that Sarah and her new boyfriend Aldous Snow (Brand) are also staying at the resort, Peter begins to follow them around. Taking advice from his brother, Peter begins spending time with Rachel and the two develop feelings for one another. Soon, Sarah becomes jealous of Peter and Rachel and the two couples set out to destroy the other.
What is most assuring about Forgetting Sarah Marshall is that even though it technically has Apatow written all over it. Aside from the producing credit, the film actually has little to no connection with him. I’m not discrediting Apatow, far from it. I’m very fond of his style and pictures. I am simply stating that the future of the genre looks a little brighter when he isn’t the only name in the game. Directed by Stoller and written by Segel. Forgetting Sarah Marshall has an abundance of fresh faces to bolster a sparse breed. It is excessively difficult to depict real-life scenarios and the ones who can are few and far between. Now, with a slew of up-and-comers that have this capability. Cinema doesn’t appear to be losing all meaning and depth. What Segel and Stoller have created is much bigger than they realize.
Whether it is the witty, clever, or sheer idiotic humour. Jason Segel, best known for his role as Marshall in How I Met Your Mother, displays his ingenuity in spades. Although, it isn’t always his keen eye for laughs that makes the viewers insides ache. His ability to evoke an endless source of empathy, joy, sadness, spite, essentially all the relevance of existence is masterful. In coordination with the aforementioned Nicholas Stoller. Segel is able to form a cohesiveness around Forgetting Sarah Marshall that almost makes it free from error. As for Stoller, who’s direction as a first-timer is remarkable, makes up for any faltering. You’d wouldn’t figure it was his initiation into directing considering how accomplished his form behind the camera is. Together, the two create a formidable duo who’s next collaboration is much anticipated.
I don’t really know the reason why I love this film. Essentially right from the get go I was smitten. Perhaps that I happened to be in a similar situation around the time of its release intoxicated me, but I digress. Forgetting Sarah Marshall’s sweet and funny cast really completes the film. Featuring Jason Segel, Kristen Bell, Mila Kunis, and Russell Brand. Without this complimenting foursome, Forgetting Sarah Marshall’s ageless story would not have the emotion, hilarity, or flare in its potency. The film also features hilarious cameos from Bill Hader and Jonah Hill.
If I’m being completely honest, to say that my respect for Kunis and Bell was restricted would be putting it lightly. In my defence, this film was released in 2008 and Black Swan hadn’t been released yet. Since then, my admiration for the two has grown significantly, thanks in large part to Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Cards on the table, Bell really hasn’t impressed me since. Now that she’s proven she has the chops, I expect more from her and she continues to do these idiotic romantic comedies. Regardless, Bell is extravagant in the film and deserves better than what she’s getting. As for Kunis, well, she really steals the show. Conveying such emotional range and this flirty charm, one can’t help but fall for her, easily the best performance in the film.
It’s hard to imagine a time when Russell Brand wasn’t everywhere, but in 2008, this was the case. Until Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Brand pretty much flew under-the-radar. This was easily the role that launched Brand into a respectable actor and after following it up with Stoller’s next film, Get Him to the Greek, Brand proves it was no fluke. Finally, Jason Segel, who pulls double duty as the lead and writer of the film. Really gets a chance to assert himself amongst comedy’s best and doesn’t waste the opportunity. Segel’s performance is second only to Kunis, who honestly has the better written role. Segel does a superb job exuding the melancholic stupidity that usual accompanies heartbreak. Not to mention a series of sequences that allows him to showcase his dramatic skills. Overall, Forgetting Sarah Marshall’s cast is nearly faultless in their portrayals.
Outrageously funny and undeniably heartfelt. Forgetting Sarah Marshall is a romantic comedy for the ages.
Forgetting Sarah Marshall: 8.5 out of 10.
Posted on July 2, 2013, in Rom-Com and tagged Bell, Brand, Comedy, Drama, Hader, Hill, Kunis, Rom-com, Romance, Segel, Stoller. Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.
Very nice! I would have liked this movie much more if not for Russell Brand.
LOL, what’s wrong with Russell Brand in it? He was also good in “Get Him to the Greek.”
I don’t like his style of humor is all. Not my type… : )
My wife kind of dragged me into watching this because I had no interest in it at first but I really love it. Even Russell Brand.
Same here, a terrific rom-com through and through.
FSM is one of my favorite comedies in recent memory. It feels personal (Segel based some parts on past relationships) and it’s really hysterical.
I wish The Five Year Engagement was as good as this one.
I’ve yet to check out “The Fife Year Engagement” it is sitting on my PVR. I’m guessing you don’t recommend it? LOL.
FSM is definitely one of the better recent rom-coms. I watched an interview with Segel who talked about his inspiration for the film coming from past relationships. Truly funny stuff!
Haha. I think The Five Year Engagement is ok. I saw it in the theater and expected FSM-level comedy. It’s a more traditional romcom, I guess. Kind of forgettable.
Alright, I’ll probably still check it out, see what happens.
I’m glad you love this flick as much as you do. It really is a chick flick in disguise and it does so well that it sneaks in and steals your attention. Like you said, plenty of credit to Segel and Stoller who really know how to work together (minus Five Year Engagement).
Too true. It has got all the qualities and traits or a chick-flick, but does really well to encompass everybody.
I’m really considering not checking out The Five Year Engagement now lol. You’re the second person today to tell me it isn’t as good as FSM.
This was a brilliant comedy, however it is responsible for the sinfully annoying phrase ‘you saand like yaar fram Laandaan!’. Being from London this has been worn soooo thin. Great review!
LOL, thanks! Too true, I know a few who wore that out quickly.
Russell Brand & Kristen Bell, two of the most irritating actors in Hollywood. Yet it did work somehow!
LOL, yes yes, it did work.
Aw, I love this film. It never fails to make me laugh.
Nice review, glad you liked the film.