Never Tell Me the Odds

This is a movie review about Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s new flick 50/50, but if I’d said that straight off, nobody would read this post because who wants to read about a cancer-themed movie?  So I’ve willfully mislead and lured you with Mr. Sex-in-a-Blaster-Holster up there.  It worked, didn’t it?!  Though seeing the bottom of that cover is peeving me as I type this with that “EPISODE IV” bullcrap.  Just call it Star Wars, FFS, Lucas you asshole…

Anyway, 50/50 was a pleasant enough little film, but not terribly remarkable or memorable in any way, as you can see how easily distracted I am while trying to write about it.  Movies for which you feel nothing are the hardest to write about.  Though it’s painful during the viewing, I’d honestly rather be appalled or offended by awfulness so I could at least milk a decent rant from the experience.

50/50 is the type of movie (i.e. a comedy) I’d never ordinarily see, but JGL in the lead made attendance compulsory.  As a comedy, it is more in the “warm chuckles” vein than “guffaws.”  That’s fine by me.  I also very much appreciated 50/50 for what it didn’t do.  A movie about a main character with cancer that doesn’t (though there were a few musical montages that came close) veer into schmaltz, sentimentality, cathartic crying, or pink-ribbon feel-good bullshit is a thing to admire.  When JGL’s character throws out an offhand reference to Terms of Endearment, you know the filmmakers are telling the audience exactly what kind of film 50/50 does NOT want to be.

That said, although 50/50 wasn’t bad in any way, it also wasn’t outstandingly good in any way.  It’s worth watching once for JGL, who turns in a very solid and restrained performance.  Seth Rogan didn’t make me want to kill him.  It also had a greyhound in a few scenes, which was nice.  But I can’t advise rushing out to see it.  I told BW that if he hadn’t brought it up, I probably would have forgotten I’d even seen 50/50 by the time we finished our 20 minute walk home from the theater.

Of the two films this year involving cancer and a loveable leading man with a cute dog, Beginners is the clear winner in terms of originality and memorability.  Save 50/50 for a Netflix on some day when maybe you have a cold or the flu; it will pleasantly pass the time, won’t be too challenging, and give you a smile or two.

3 Responses to “Never Tell Me the Odds”

  1. LOUP Says:

    Did you see (500) Days of Summer yet? I watched it a few weeks back and thought of you.

  2. tarsier Says:

    I kinda want to see it, but I also kinda think it will make me want to go hunt down Zooey and shiv her. Don’t wanna do jail time.

  3. LOUP Says:

    I know what you mean. We watched her new show “New Girl” and I lost any feelings I had for her. It was horrible. That shit can’t be unseen.

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