Saturday, December 12, 2015

Film Review: Ted 2

Copyright: Universal Pictures
There is a lot to be gained by completely letting go of some cinematic ideas (and ideals). In Ted 2, this is demonstrated by the readiness of its director and writer Seth MacFarlane to disregard the previous installment of the series and everything that happened there.

This way, MacFarlane slithers back into his TV zone of comfort, where he makes one more Family Guy episode that only happens to last two hours and includes live action and not animation.

There’s no doubt that he is a smart and talented guy, but I kind suspect that he sees himself as the golden god of comedy. Unfortunately for him, he isn’t, especially when it comes to feature-length movies.

Ted 2, however, is a project that he approached with a lot less ambition and hunger than A Million Ways to die in the West. Here, this is good news because it allows the film to provide the audience with the thing MacFarlane does best: a barrage of rapid-fire, stream-of-consciousness jokes that include a colorful range of offensive stuff. It is empty of everything else, but no one ever promised anything like that to Ted 2 audience.

The plot, which revolves around Ted being forced to prove that he is not a possession, but a person, isn’t such a big deal and it unravels deep in the background. In the foreground, we have the animated bear that is directed, written and voiced by MacFarlane, cracking jokes with Mark Wahlberg’s character John. There’s nothing more to this film than that, which is oddly enough in its own right. And unlike a similarly self-centered comedy Tusk, this one didn’t get lost in hermetic, obnoxious jokes which drowned the Kevin Smith’s film.

In fact, the entire film with its sets, additional actors and even the plot is simply a sabot used to deliver its true penetrating round: MacFarlane cracking jokes about German Wings cockpit and Charlie Hebdo attack (which are one of the funniest parts of a film). But, in spite of this disregard of all that is cinematic and movie-worthy, Ted 2 is still a funny film and it manages to deliver laughs, especially when it goes into the non-PC waters. All those who liked the previous film will thoroughly enjoy this one as well.

With this mold, MacFarlane can make as many Ted sequels as he likes. We could have Ted: Disneyland, Ted: Islamic State, Ted: Whatever and they would probably all be as good as Ted 2.


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