2009 The Year In Movies: 4-Comedy

BRUNO (Sacha Baron Cohen)

Carry on our review of the movies we’ll be enjoying in 2009, after the dramatic genre, now is turn for the comedies. And in the laughing bandwagon the most anticipated work is Sacha Baron Cohen’s new feature film, “Bruno”; taken from another of his TV show’s characters, this time a fashion-victim, Austrian gay TV presenter who will take his mega-camp attitude to all the wrong places around the States. The production of the movie has already stirred a big deal of controversy and everything leads to believe it will be a worthy successor fro “Borat”.

Other promising flick is Edgar Wright’s adaptation of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s comic series, Scott Lee, telling the misadventures of a slacker (Michael Cera) who dreams with becoming a rock-star with his band the Sex Bob-Omb. “Scott Lee vs. The World” follows up the director’s international success with “Hot Fuzz” and “Shaun Of The Dead.”

FUNNY PEOPLE (Judd Apatow)

Even if it’s British talent the one we are waiting for most eagerly, the new king of American comedy, Judd Apatow, has also several weapons of mass laughter ready to be added to his already packed CV. As director, Apatow will count with Adam Sandler and one of his regulars, Seth Rogen, as a pair of comedians teaming up as veteran and protégée in “Funny People”, coming up in the summer.

I LOVE YOU MAN (John Hamburg)

Male bonding verging on the homoerotic will be the main subject in several occasions for laughter. The first of them “I Love You Man” will arrive shortly and tells the story of a future groom who, due to lack of friends, has to resort to date other men trying to convince them to be best men for his wedding. On a more indie and low-budget level, Lynn Shelton’s “Humpday”, in which two college friends re-take their friendship in search of new adventures and got involved with an art group filming porn. The plot looks like a gay version of the latest Kevin Smith movie, which for comic potential is not a bad thing.

I LOVE YOU PHILIP MORRIS (John Requa & Glenn Ficarra)

From male bonding going a bit too far, to proper gay subjects, the new star vehicle for Jim Carrey will see him leaving a established family to live ‘la vida loca’ in gay Miami. His lifestyle takes him to prison where he’ll meet and fall in love to Ewan McGregor. “I Love You Philip Morris” is being co-directed by experienced screenwriters John Requa & Glenn Ficarra. It could either go and become one of the biggest surprises of 2009 or sweep the board at the Razzies.

And from one of today’s comedy kings, to one of the most recent pretenders to the Queen throne. Ellen Page, who jumped to fame thanks to her hilarious turn in “Juno”, will star alongside Drew Barrymore in the latter’s directorial debut “Whip It”. A tale of an indie rock loving girl joining a roller derby league to excape the misery of her surroundings.

500 DAYS OF SUMMER (Marc Webb)

As far as unconventional romantic comedies go, this summer’s likely winner will be “500 days of summer” in which Zooey Deschanel , a women who does not believe in love, will have to fight old-fashioned loving impulses from Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Also, famous for his intellectual and eccentric edge (I Heart Huckabees), David O. Russell’s filmography to date has provided us with all sort of unusual characters. The latest one “Nailed”, judging by its synopsis, seem to be going that path; where a waitress gets one of its nails accidentally going inside her head, which will alter her activist behaviour, leading her to Washington where a senator will cross her way. Jake Gyllenhaal, Catherine Keener, James Marsden and Jessica Biel are part of its colourful cast.

LAND OF THE LOST (Brad Silberling)

Family oriented films these days required very cautious approach, as the US mainstream more often than not provides us with rather unpalatably cheesy products to be consumed by all ages, normally using a popular funny actor as bait. Among this year’s most interesting ones, on paper, “Land of the lost” will find Will Ferrell travelling in time to Dinosaur land; Ferrell’s tried and tested humour is not no to be discarded. It has turned such odd propositions as “Elf” into minor classics in the past. Robert Rodriguez, when away from his mate Tarantino, is no stranger to family fares and “Shorts” joins some of his previous efforts in this field, such as “Spy Kids”. William H. Macy and James Spader both got roles in the Mexican director’s latest venture.

BLACK DYNAMITE (Scott Sanders)

And around the realms of the totally unpredictable, “Black Dynamite” will take the spoof sub-genre to 70’s blaxploitation. The trailer looks quite promising. Less promising, but with undeniable popular attractive will be the remake of Alan Parker’s arts school-set musical “Fame”, still inspiring new revisions after decades of its original release.

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