Directed By: Jonathan Levine
Written By: Evan Goldberg, Kyle Hunter, Jonathan Levine, Ariel Shaffir
Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogen, Anthony Mackie, Lizzy Caplan, Jillian Bell, Michael Shannon, Mindy Kaling
Sullywood Rating: 7/10
A comedy with a heart you don’t say? I do say. I expected laughter, drinking, drugs, and shenanigans going into The Night Before, but what I didn’t expect is to tear up a little from this festive film.
From the opening narration given by, well I won’t ruin the ending, from the opening narration you got the feeling that while we were going to have a good time, we would also experience some heartbreaking ones. I’m not kidding when I say that there were some gasps in my theater when learning about the fate of Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s parents in the beginning of the movie.
But these moments of drama and sadness don’t serve as downers, but provide us with further evidence of the friendship between our three main characters and their history together. The movie did a good job of providing us with as much exposure to these friends and their bond as possible for us to feel for them and what they are going through. In fact, the supporting characters of this film for the most part take a back seat. We are all in with the three friends’ journey to find the ultimate party, while also getting a glimpse into their last time doing this tradition every year on Christmas Eve. Which speaking of Christmas Eve, I was pleasantly surprised at how much Christmas was actually involved with this film. I was thinking coming into it that Christmas was going to just be the backdrop for the film, but the happy holiday accompanies our friends through the entirety of the movie.
On to the comedy. Remember that movie that Seth Rogen did drugs and was hilarious? Okay fine, you’d have an easier time finding one where he didn’t do drugs. I like Seth Rogen and his buddies’ movies a little too much at times, probably overrating them. What worried me was that we were just going to see the same scenes where Rogen takes a drug and his flipping out and acts all crazy. Well, he does take drugs, lots of them, all different types, you probably have to just see it to believe me. Well in The Night Before, he takes it to a whole new level, pretty sure he was flipping out the entire night of their quest. Which was ridiculously hilarious, especially his conversation with Spencer and his family. 🙂
Other good bits from the film were of course Mr. Green, the guy’s childhood drug dealer, and the hipster Grinch, who lives her life by the code of the wet bandits and Hans Gruber.
The Night Before won’t have you laughing out loud at every moment, but that’s a good thing, because I actually found myself intrigued by the story line itself and witnessing the way the friends grow throughout the film. Both were very well done for a comedy. But what this movie really needed was James Franco and Miley Cyrus who were absent….or were they? If you enjoy Seth Rogen movies, you’ll definitely enjoy this new holiday classic, but maybe save it for the kids when they are older, okay?
Did you see The Night Before? What were your thoughts?