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Tagline: It takes a pair to beat the odds.
Running time: 1 hour 40 minutes
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Points: 1650 (Level 3)
Length & Pace:
50/50 is based on the true story of the writer of the film. It’s about finding out you have cancer and how to deal with it – not exactly the most appealing story to the average person. The movie was originally going to be called “I’m with Cancer” but it was decided that the word cancer is too much of a turn-off to moviegoers. It’s a bit of a dramedy, meaning it’s both a comedy and a drama. Luckily, the film finds a good balance between the two.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays Adam, a guy with a nice house, good job, and pretty girlfriend. But his life comes crashing down on him when he finds out that he has a rare form of cancer. He looks it up and apparently there’s a 50/50 chance of beating it. He’s not too happy with the outlook but his friend makes sure to point out to him that those are pretty good odds if it were for a casino game. That friend is played by Seth Rogen. He says things like this throughout the film as a way to support his good friend. They may not be the smartest or most accurate statements, but he just wants to make his buddy feel better and there’s certainly nothing wrong with that. While he’s a brash, outspoken type of guy that Rogen usually plays, he seems to be more of a help than Adam’s own live-in girlfriend and overbearing mother.
This is familiar territory for Rogen who played a very similar role in the movie Funny People just two years ago. That movie, too, was about a man who finds out he has a terminal health condition, and Rogen played the supportive friend. However, that movie was very drawn-out and felt like it was trying to fit too much into it. 50/50 is the complete opposite. It clocks in at a pretty short hour and forty minutes, and kind of leaves you wanting more. There’s good acting all around, including Anna Kendrick who plays Adam’s young therapist whom he develops a strong connection with. And the movie has a very realistic, heartfelt feel to it. But when it really seems to get going and starts to pull you in, it just kind of stops. It’s nice to see a film though where a decent person in a bad situation has a good support system around him and tends to find it in unlikely places.
Recommendations: The Shawshank Redemption (1994), Se7en , 25th Hour
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