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"Knocked Up" Is a Really Great Movie

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At long last, little Judd Apatow is becoming a man. It all seems like it went by so fast- first his middle/high school days (Freaks and Geeks), then college (Undeclared), and who could forget when he lost his virginity? Well, the boy is finally settling down, via the new and hysterical Knocked Up.

On second thought, the term "settling down" is a poor one to describe Knocked Up. This film is about pregnancy the way Virgin is about sex- that is to say it treats the subject with respect but uses it to show how people change. But don't let that nice sounding language fool you: there are still pleanty of Total Recall and weed jokes. This is probably one of the few movies that would play equally well at a frat housea, on a date, and at a lamaze class.

One thing that seperates Knocked Up from Apatow's other work is that it is at least partially linear. We know the baby's coming, the characters know the baby's coming (sure there is talk of her getting an abortion, but as Rogen noted in a great interview earlier this week, "It [isn't] a movie about a women deciding she should keep her baby; it [is] about a woman who decided she was going to keep the baby."). But Apatow throws in enough twists to keep the film surprising. Every plot-moving action taken by the characters is both unexpected and in character, especially the ones played by couple Paul Rudd ("Pete") and Leslie Mann ("Debbie"). Theirs is a life that is equal parts smartass and Ordinary People. Just like Apatow spun off Rogen's stoner in Virgin to make this, Rudd and Mann's rocky marriage could just as easily be it's own film.

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As far as the plot goes, its both simple and profound.The ads tell you everything- E! reporter and stoner guy get pregnant, they have to adjust to each other. Seth Rogen and and Katherine Heigl have great chemistry- they seem to both repel and interest each other at the same time. The film's about a pressing issue than Virgin, so the laughs are bigger and the lows are lower, and the actors play them off fantistically. The whole thing feels both loose and tight, but more so, genuine. In the summer of Shrek the Third and yet another goddamn pengiun movie, Knocked Up is a film about real people working out real problems. It's just that Apatow's the first to realize that real life can be funny as hell.