Director: Seth MacFarlane.
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, Seth MacFarlane.
Family Guy. American Dad. The Cleveland Show. These are some of the best and most successful adult animation shows to grace our screens since South Park offended everybody. Now the creator, Seth MacFarlane takes on the big screen with his first feature film, Ted.
Ted is a teddy bear and best friend to child loner John Bennett (Mark Wahlberg). When John makes a wish one night it comes true, and the next morning Ted can walk. He can talk. He can swear and he can smoke weed.
The film focuses on Ted and John as adults. Or as adult as a talking teddy bear can be. They still live together in an apartment. They still smoke weed and they still curse. One difference. Johns long term girlfriend Lori Collins (Mila Kunis) is also in residence. John has grown up. Well part of him has. He has a job which he doesn't take seriously and would rather be stoned with Ted than go to work. Eventually Lori takes issue with this and John is left to choose between his best friend and his girlfriend. This is tested when Ted is kidnapped by a Tiffany loving uberfan and his Susan Boylesque son.
The film has many similarities to MacFarlanes animated work. The script and comedy style are very similar. Do not watch this film with young children or if you are easily offended. Toilet humour and foul language are the order of the day. However there is an honesty in the comedy that almost takes the offence away. I would say an innocence, if the jokes weren't so close to the mark. There is nothing innocent about a teddy bear humping a till register. It is the way the lines are delivered, with no malice or hurtful intent that gives an air of childlike innocence to them. As if a child were saying it, and there fore the offence dissipates. Almost.
The animation of Ted himself is fantastic. Excellent attention to detail in terms of movement and facial expressions. It is easy to believe he is actually there. Part of this is also testament to the cast, all of whom do an incredible job of acting against nothing. Wahlberg occasionally presents as a little wooden and fake in his delivery of his lines but the purity and innocence he puts into Johns character make it difficult not to love him.
Kunis offers an outstanding performance as the ballsy Lori with excellent use of the C word. She holds her own against both Wahlberg and MacFarlane in terms of comedy timing and line delivery. MacFarlane himself gives his usual straight forward expertly timed comic performance as Ted. I dare you not to fall in love with him.
Ted is a hilarious, rude, meaningful story of lifelong friendship and love. The comedy is way above par with some genuinely touching moments. Ted does not disappoint. Watch it. Now.