I LOVE YOU, MAN
starring Paul Rudd, Jason Segel, Rashida Jones, Andy Samberg
screenplay by John Hamburg and Larry Levin
directed by John Hamburg
THE GREAT BUCK HOWARD
starring John Malkovich, Colin Hanks, Emily Blunt, Ricky Jay
written and directed by Sean McGinly
by Ian Pugh SPOILER WARNING IN EFFECT. It hits the familiar marks--gross-out gags, frank sex-talk, pop-culture references--but it's still too difficult to slot I Love You, Man in with all the other Apatow-era "dick flicks" to which it will inevitably be compared, simply because it seems so dead-set on bucking their reliance on traditional values in favour of something more ambiguous. Its attempt at a comic centrepiece is a one-two punch of projectile vomiting and the, like, totally gross idea of two dudes kissing. This early homophobic recoil comes back to haunt the painstakingly-calculated bromances and lengthy discussions of "male protocol" that take up the rest of the film's runtime. The cultural lines between "gay" and "straight" already left somewhat abstract (the protagonist's gay brother (Andy Samberg, playing against effeminate stereotypes) declares their father (J.K. Simmons) to be an "honorary homo"--which means what, exactly?), the film has plenty of fun toying with the concepts of frat-boy immaturity and unspoken sexuality.