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TED 2 (review)

33224_2_frontTED 2

Written by Seth MacFarlane, Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild

Directed by Seth MacFarlane

Starring Mark Wahlberg, Seth MacFarlane and Amanda Seyfried

I have to admit; I was mildly surprised by TED. I expected Seth McFarlane’s attempt at live action comedy would amount to little more than recycled Family Guy jokes. I mean, there were recycled Family Guy bits but Ted also stood on his own two feet as an original character, while MacFarlane gave us a simple, and often quite funny, story about a boy who didn’t want to grow up. And what better way to demonstrate that on screen than with a teddy bear he cannot be without? TED 2 was inevitable, not unwelcome per se but not absolutely necessary all the same. What once had purpose, albeit smothered in debauchery, is now aimless. The debauchery is still there but it feels more like a string of bits feebly connected together than the civil rights satire it likes to think it is.

Like his last film, A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST, McFarlane’s timing in TED 2 feels off. It isn’t sharp  or focused and that might be for a decent reason as the plot they went with for this sequel was not the one they originally wanted. The original idea for TED 2 was to have Ted drive across country for a pot deal but that is more or less the plot of WE’RE THE MILLERS so that was scrapped, which is unfortunate; a TED 2 road trip movie allows for aimless meandering and a series of crude antics. It is still pretty pointless but it is at least forgivable. Ted learns something about America and you’ve got yourself a movie.

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What actually happens in TED 2 is Ted is declared as property after a rejected adoption application he and new bride, Tami-Lynn (Jessica Barth) apply for in hopes of saving their already troubled marriage, triggers a red flag in some government system. Ted has nothing and enlists the help of his best buddy John (Mark Wahlberg) to help him sue the government for his civil rights and to be declared human. Amanda Seyfried plays a pothead lawyer assigned to Ted’s case as her first and suddenly MacFarlane decides its a good point to fill time in an already long film with montages that feature this threesome dancing in a library. Not only is Ted’s pursuit of civil rights borderline offensive to every other civil rights issue that ever existed but MacFarlane doesn’t seem to know how to get to his point any more than he knows the point itself.

I’m not going to deny laughing while watching TED 2. I do like that little bear, after all. But I also laughed at A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST here and there and I wouldn’t recommend that to anyone really. Let’s just say that TED 2 is slightly better than A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST and I’ll let you do with that what you will.

2.5 sheep

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How many sheep would you give Ted 2?

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