Pineapple Express Review
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Last year at this time, everyone was talking about the Apatow gangís slacker comedy, Superbad. Geeky teenage boys (or at least those capable of sneaking into an R-rated movie) flocked to theaters to see three other geeky teenage boys on a quest to get drunk and get laid. The rest of us, though, just didnít quite get it.

I pretty much expected the same to be true of this Augustís Apatow comedy, Pineapple Express: that 20-something stoners would love it, while the rest of us would just get lost in the smoke. But, believe it or not, I kinda got it, too.

Pineapple Express stars Seth Rogen as process server and pothead Dale Denton. While on the job one night, Dale stops to take a smoke break and witnesses a murder. With nowhere else to turn (and his with head still cloudy from the dopest dope heís ever smoked), Dale goes running to his drug dealer, Saul (James Franco).

Since one of the killers was a cop (Rosie Perez) and the other one was drug kingpin Ted Jones (Gary Cole)ówho also happens to be Saulís supplieróthe two figure theyíre in serious trouble. So they pack a bag of weed and make a run for it. But Jonesís goonsóand the copsóarenít far behind.

Despite my general lack of enthusiasm for stoner comedies, Pineapple Express quickly won me over. Though itís basically the story of two potheads on the run, itís entertaining anywayóeven if you happen to be completely sober. Maybe thatís because itís not just a stoner comedy. Itís also a buddy flick. And a road trip movie. Itís even a quirky crime thriller. So itís more than just a couple of guys sitting on a couch, eating Cheetos, and giggling.

Of course, it doesnít hurt that the main characters are a couple of loveable losers. Though Rogen isnít bad as Dale, Franco steals the show as naÔve and trusting (and absolutely hilarious) dealer, Saul.

And maybe it helps that the comedy isnít the typical Apatow fare. While itís often crude and sophomoric, the gross-out gags and sexual humor are kept to a minimum, leaving a whole bunch of silly and light-hearted (and light-headed) laughs. I was pleasantly surprised to find that it made me laugh a whole lot more than it made me cringe.

The only real problem with Pineapple Express is that itís longer than necessary. Itís been my complaint with Apatow comedies time and time again: they just donít know when to stop. And the same is true here. Director David Gordon Green attempts to end bigówith a huge, over-the-top action scene. But instead of making the movie more thrilling, the action sequences feel flat and out of place. Itís too bad, tooóbecause it ends an otherwise hilarious movie on a low point.

Still, Iíd definitely recommend Pineapple Express over both Superbad and this yearís other stoner adventure, Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay. Itís good for a few brainless, late-summer laughsóand you donít even have to indulge to enjoy it.

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