After a handful of producer credits, Judd Apatow is back in the hot seat for romantic comedy This is 40, the sort-of sequel to 2007’s Knocked Up. This time the director has turned his gaze on the difficulties of marriage, and his typically perceptive examination proves equally insightful and enjoyable.
The narrative focuses on the marriage of frustrated couple Pete (Paul Rudd) and Debbie (Leslie Mann) on the eve of their 40th birthdays, and as the party approaches the pair must overcome their midlife troubles, in business and with one another.
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Prolific man-child director Judd Apatow is back in the producer hot-seat for The Five-Year Engagement (2012), an entertaining romantic comedy which will please Apatow fans as well as appeal to broader audiences. Directed by Nicholas Stoller, the plot follows Tom (Jason Segel, reuniting with Stoller) and Violet (Emily Brunt) who become engaged after a unique proposal in the film’s opening minutes.
Plans are made and venues are booked, but when Violet jumps at the chance to pursue her academic career in Michigan, Tom agrees to delay the wedding and put his own career as an aspiring chef on hold. Predictably, Tom’s willing sacrifice soon turns into resentment; Violet thrives in her new position while Tom wastes his talent preparing sandwiches in a deli, lamenting what could have been. As the planned two year stay is continually extended, more and more obstacles emerge for the likeable couple.
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