Having been a fan of Seth McFarlane’s work with Family Guy and American Dad since the shows both began, it’s been interesting to watch the multi-talented entertainment-smiths skills develop and become much more universally appreciated over the various projects he develops. Over his career he has mastered animation with American Dan, The Cleveland Show and breadwinner Family Guy solidifying his position as one of the most talented and genius contributors to both television and animation. He has also crafted several records and often adds his musical touch to his television work.
Over the last few years however, Seth has also managed to conquer the silver screen, adding a whole new dimension to this man’s seemingly unlimited talents. He put his own acting skills to work alongside Oscar winning actress Charlize Theron in the smutty A Million Ways To Die In The West but his stand out work on the big screen was found with the cuddly bro-mance, Ted which has been paired up with an even better sequel this month in the furry form of Ted 2.
Ted 2 opens with the loveable but foul-mouthed Ted (voiced by MacFarlane) getting married to his fiancé, Tami-Lynn while thunder-buddy John (Mark Wahlberg) has been divorced from now ex-wife Lori (an unfeatured Mila Kunis) for the last 6 months. With Ted and Tami-Lynn constantly fighting following their marriage, Ted is convinced by a co-worker that the only way to help them get through the rough patch is to have a baby.
Because Ted is a stuffed toy and therefore missing some integral parts to help this process along, they decide, after finding out Tami-Lynn is infertile and their plans of having Tom Brady be the involuntary sperm donor for Ted are squashed, to adopt a child. Unfortunately their request to adopt is rejected and they are then put on a watch list which results in Ted being officially declared as property and not a person which results in Ted losing his job and Ted and Tami-Lynn’s marriage being annulled.
Not willing to admit defeat, Ted and John take on law firm newbie Samantha Leslie Jackson (played by Amanda Seyfried), a young, hip lawyer who shares the pair’s love of smoking pot and is just as free spirited as the two best buddies. They then set out on a mission to ensure that Ted is declared a person.
While I enjoyed the first in the franchise, especially because of Mila Kunis playing the lead female role, I have to say that Ted 2 really did make a bigger impression on me than the first film. The special effects used to bring the title character to life are pretty exceptional here. The humour, while at times during the first film felt a little stale, was taken up several notches for the sequel and while a couple of gags were repeated in Ted 2 (such as the Google search constantly asking whether they meant ‘black cocks’ and one where Ted discovers Johns porn collection), they delivered them in surprising ways in order to make them funnier with every execution.
Along with the main characters, Ted 2 brought several A-list cameos along for the ride including Jay Leno, who played a seedy mens room visitor, Liam Neeson as an eccentric Trix shoplifter at Ted’s workplace and Morgan Freeman who joined the cast as Patrick Meighan, America’s most successful civil rights attorney. They were joined by former Ted co-stars Jessica Barth (who plays Tami-Lynn), Giovanni Ribisi as Ted-obsessed stalker Donny and Patrick Warburton offers an awkward performance of semi-closeted Guy.
Like most MacFarlane projects, a song and dance will always be included and Ted 2 is no exception. The opening of the film featured a perfectly orchestrated and choreographed song and dance intro led by Ted. Some limelight was also offered to Amanda Seyfried with an acoustic number performed by her character – a skill that was nice to see flexed given her previous Mamma Mia and Les Miserables roles featuring the actress’s musical abilities which proved a hit with cinemagoers.
Seth has done a pretty spectacular job with this film. The cast is fairly flawless and the laughs are fairly frequent and never tire due to their almost improvised feel. There are also a few cringe-worthy moments, including a scene where John and Ted visit the local fertilization clinic and things get a little messy, that really digs the laughs in deep and makes this sequel very memorable. It’s definitely well worth the watch!
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::: RenownedForSound.com’s Editor and Founder –
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