Movie Review: The Night Before

Jean-Paul’s Rating: 3/5 stars

Bottom Line: A solid Christmas movie. One of those irreverent, just this side of uncomfortable funny movies.  Seth Rogen trips balls throughout most of the movie.

My brother and I decided to be Jews for a day and hit the movie theater on Christmas.  It was the most crowded I have ever seen a theater for a matinee showing.  Not that “The Night Before” was crowded, given it’s on its last legs at this point, but much of everything else was sold out already.  Craziness.

The craziness that occurs in “The Night Before” stems from a touching story of friendship and loss that is really quite beautiful and well thought out for a movie that you just know is going to be one of those stupid men get into stupid predicaments and have to make up with their much more grounded significant others movies.  When Ethan’s (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) parents are killed, friends Chris (Anthony Mackie) and Isaac (Seth Rogen) comfort him and make sure he’s never alone on Christmas Eve by throwing together an epic night on the town.  This tradition continues for many a year until the three are well into adulthood and have changing responsibilities and decide to have just one more epic Christmas Eve together.

The movie works pretty well.  There’s nothing groundbreaking, just a solid buddy comedy like almost every other movie Seth Rogen has ever been in.  The man is the undisputed master of movies like this.  Mackie, Gordon-Levitt, and Rogen have real chemistry together and you can just tell that they and the other cast members had one hell of a good time filming the movie.  One has to wonder, though, if Rogen was just portraying a person tripping balls throughout the movie or if he was 100% in character so to speak when performing.

There’s nothing much else to say about “The Night Before”.  It’s a fun movie and probably one that you could watch once a year and enjoy every time.  Which is saying quite a lot, but it’s not even close to being a classic.  It’s more just solid.  If you like this type of movie, you’ll like this movie.  How’s that for circular logic?