If you love “Forgetting Sarah Marshall,” you’ll love “The Five-Year Engagement.” Both films are from director Nicholas Stoller and writer/actor Jason Segel, and they both share irreverent jokes, bare bums, foul language, and anything else you can think of to contribute to an R-rating. It is Segel/Stoller’s characteristic raunchy and sweet combo style that flawlessly mixes penis jokes with I-love-you’s.
The story is about the engagement of lovebirds Tom Solomon (Segel) and Violet Barnes (Emily Blunt) and their stressful, crazy five-year trip to the altar. Once engaged, they continually are forced to push off the wedding as life gets in the way. When Violet accepts a psychology post-doc in Michigan, Tom chooses to quit his job as a sous chef at a popular restaurant, and the two depart sunny San Francisco for snowy Ann Arbor. While Violet loves her work and coworkers (Rhys Ifans, Mindy Kaling, and Kevin Hart), Tom begins to lose his mind, sinking into a hunting, bunny-costume-wearing cocoon of a life. The movie explores sacrifice in relationships, miscommunication, and everyday challenges of love; but ultimately, if love is meant to be, it will. Just hurry to fall in love, get married and start your lives together before all the grandparents die.
The co-stars were as funny as the stars and stole many scenes. Chris Pratt plays Segel’s rude, obnoxious best friend who knocks up Blunt’s sister (Alison Brie). Then the two embark on an unlikely romance that is as ridiculous as it is cute. All the actors displayed perfect chemistry. Couples, best friends, sisters, you name it, were all believable and perfect. Blunt and Segel especially are so picture-perfect that you want them to ditch their real-life partners and get together.
My only criticism is there were too many unnecessary or overly long scenes and some failed jokes. The movie’s running time is 124 minutes. Personally, I did not mind the length; because 1) I’m not four years old so 2) if I like a movie, I can sit through two hours. Others, however, complained. As suspected from double threat Segel and Stoller, there is plenty of cursing, dirty jokes, slapstick, and occasional nudity (you will see Segel’s behind, but I heard through the grapevine that in the unedited DVD version you will see much more of him, if you know what I mean).
“The Five-Year Engagement” is hilarious, predictable, honest and sweet. You’ll laugh. You’ll smile. You’ll roll your eyes. You’ll cry (just kidding, it’s not that sentimental). You will leave the theatre happy and with a subtly deeper understanding of life and love, because that’s what comedies are supposed to do. Watch the trailer here.