Wednesday, December 5, 2012

PCP on DVD - 50/50

Making a good film about cancer is hard.  Making a good film about cancer that is both touching and funny is even harder.  50/50 is an attempt to be that film, and fortunately it succeeds.

50/50 - 2011, rated R.  My rating:  8 out of 10.

50/50 is based on a true story.  The film is written by Will Reiser, a TV exec and real-life friend of Seth Rogen's that underwent treatment for cancer while in his 20s.  Playing the character based on Reiser is Joseph Gordon-Levitt, turning in yet another stellar performance in his career.  JGL is seriously and criminally underappreciated by too many people.  I'm hoping that the films he's been involved in for the past few years (Inception, TDKR, Looper, Premium Rush, 500 Days of Summer, 50/50) really help him to break out and get to the A-list level of stardom that he deserves with his performances.

The 50/50 of the title is JGL's odds of beating the cancer at the time of its detection.  The film is obviously going to have its dark moments, as it is dealing with such a serious topic as cancer and death.  But it is also uplifted by some great funny moments from Seth Rogen (turning in the best performance of his career), and also laughter at the comedic ineptness of JGL's hospital therapist, an intern fresh out of med school on only her 3rd patient, played capably by Anna Kendrick.  There are also great supporting performances from a very talented cast including Bryce Dallas Howard, Anjelica Huston, Matt Frewer, & Philip Baker Hall. 

Overall, the film wound up being a lot better than I expected it to be and it is definitely worth a watch, despite the serious subject matter.  Go forth and be entertained!

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