ReviewWriter: DhivashiniWriter Ratings:Overall: Cast: Plot: Effects: Cinematography: Watch this if you liked:
“Juno” and “Funny People”
To say that "50/50" is a simple story about battling cancer would be to sinfully undermine one of the most beautifully crafted and emotionally resonant films of 2011. Written by Will Reiser, who was diagnosed with spinal tumour himself, the film tells the story of his character and his close friend, who is played by Seth Rogen. Seth is a close friend of Reiser in real life, and the movie is loosely based on what happened during the course of their friendship after the diagnosis.
"50/50"s story slowly unfolds as we watch Adam (Joseph Gordon Lewitt), who gets diagnosed with cancer pretty early in the movie. Facing problems with his seemingly supportive girlfriend Rachel (Bryce Dallas Howard), he attempts to tackle his sickness with positive help from his wacky best friend Kyle (Seth Rogen) and his therapist Katherine (played brilliantly Anna Kendrik). Although the screenplay drags in certain scenes, director Jonathan Levine (famous for "The Wackness") ensures that his film flows with raw realism that manages to tug at heart strings of the audience while making it funny at parts. Audiences will find themselves being emotional and letting out a chuckle all at once.
With that said, the wonderful cast is what that really makes the film tick, and Joseph Gordon Lewitt gives one of the most heartfelt performances of the year. He mentioned recently in an interview that he drew inspiration for his character from an experience he had when he was in his early youth, losing a friend to cancer. With that in mind, he has definitely proven himself as an actor to look out for with "50/50". He provides such a stellar performance throughout the film, engaging the audience with his pain and anguish. Seth Rogen provides most of the laughs in the film, lacing his character with a great sense of realism. Not to forget the superb Anjelica Huston playing Adam's take charge mother who attempts to cope with her son's condition while facing her husband's crisis with dementia. Jonathan Levine did indeed form the dream team for his cast, and the combination of both Joseph Gordon Lewitt and Seth Rogen does not disappoint.
"50/50" tackles a distressing issue with such grace while switching roads between being a heartfelt drama and a hilarious comedy. To make a comedy out of cancer is a risky and a serious feat, but Jonathan Levine succeeds in forming such well-rounded and likable characters to produce an unexpected pleasure of a film. Through terrific performances by Joseph Gordon Lewitt, Seth Rogen and Anna Kendrik, "50/50" provides audiences with depth emotional connection to ensure an enjoyable watch. Despite suffering from several flaws, notably in its pace, "50/50" is a perfect mix of drama and comedy, making it one of the most poignant films of the year.Cinema Online, 21 November 2011