Get Him to the Greek: Stoller’s Comedy, Starring Russell Brand

As Judd Apatow himself now makes second-tier Apatow comedies (the recent Adam Sandler serio-comedy is an example), Get Him to the Greek, which he exec-produced, belongs to the same category.
Apatow is nothing if not loyal to his entourage, shifting his players around and, generously promotes secondary to lead characters, as it is now evident with the gifted actor Jonah Hill, whose career should benefit from “Get Him to the Greek.”
Loud, crass, even vulgar in moments, “Get Him to the Greek” is a decidedly male comedy, and the question remains, when will Apatow admit good female comediennes into his continuously expanding empire.
The movie is the second collaboration of director Nicholas Stoller and Jonah Hill and Russell Brand, after “Forgetting Sarah Marshall.” Jonah’s part in that picture was too broad to sustain a whole movie, and so Stoller decided to turn the role of Aaron Green into a young record company exec, who has three days to wrangle flamboyant rock icon Aldous Snow (Russell Brand) from London to Los Angeles.
When the tale begins, Aldous has just released his latest album, “African Child,” which the critics hate. On top of that, his girlfriend and the mother of his son, the model Jackie Q (Rose Byrne) has left him. What’s a guy to do? He turns to sex, booze and drugs.
Enter young, ambitious record exec Aaron Green, who proposes to stage a tenth anniversary concert of Aldous’ legendary show at L.A. famous spot, the Greek Theater. Aaron is not exactly altruistic; he hopes that the gig will boost his own career by impressing his impossibly harsh boss Sergio Roma (Sean “Diddy” Combs, stealing almost every scene he is in).
Aldous is selfish, arrogant, abusive, and contemptuous to people, whom he treats as disposable items, and he cannot be trusted for being consistent or loyal, even to those who are close to him. But he’s also witty, fun to be around, and occasionally shows signs of humanity and vulnerability.
The constant for Aaron and Aldous, who has fallen off the wagon, as they travel, is the endless partying in countless clubs that are always packed, crowded road shows, trashy hotel rooms, and so on. Costume designer Leesa Evans deserves credit for establishing a different look in each city along the journey.
The filmmakers convey vividly the feel of the experience of hanging out with a rock star, both the fantasy-mythic elements and the more realistic ones, staying up all night, partying, and then doing the whole thing again the next night.
Boundless, raunchy energy drives the movie, which is refreshingly unpretentious and contains at least half a dozen rapid-fire jokes and great sight gags. Just the idea of watching an intermittently hilarious comedy with a normal running time and without CGI effects is a relief.

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