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This Is the End is Seth Rogen's directorial debut. He works alongside long-time writing partner Evan Goldberg, blending together self-deprecating humor and satirical farce almost perfectly. This Is the End is the funniest movie of the year so far. With a basic story that follows Seth and friends (all starring as themselves) as they welcome back Jay Baruchel to L.A. Things go horribly wrong as a sort of rapture happens and the group gets left behind to fend for themselves as they fight demons, possessions, and each other. It's hilarious, it's often over-the-top, and it's just plain fun.
Rogen and Goldberg's script is intensely funny and knows exactly how to strike the funny bone. Seth MacFarlane should take notes. It's a farce on Hollywood and acting in general and each actor plays the part perfectly, knowing exactly how to portray to the stereotype. The direction is surprisingly keen and spot on, which came to many as a surprise coming from Rogen. Although the film does suffer from being far too long for a comedy (just under two hours), and the third act is full of hit or miss jokes and is often dry, the final demon battle is entertaining, but it's a welcome relief to see the credits roll.
For being a comedy, the visuals are outstanding and I wouldn't be surprised to see it get nominated for the Oscar come award season. Each performance is heartfelt and satirical to match the script. Danny McBride finally plays a character we can all enjoy, and not the same redneck we see in most of his work. It's basically a romp of a bunch of friends doing stupid stuff, and we as the audience get to enjoy its pure hysterical bliss.
This Is the End is often hilarious and takes the genre up a few notches, but doesn't re-invent it. It's overlong, but makes up for it with a strong first two acts. The script is refreshing and performances are on-point. It's not a movie for the sheltered or faint of heart, providing inappropriate humor and gross-out stunts galore. This Is the End is a bitingly funny movie that strikes all the right notes. Mostly. I give This Is the End 3.5 stars out of 5.