There was quite a lot of hype about Ted when it first came out. So naturally I avoided it, I prefer to see movies that I haven’t heard much about so that I can be pleasantly surprised (I’m an optimist). After a couple of years I put it on my watch list and finally got round to watching it. Unfortunately I was very disappointed.
The movie isn’t all that bad, although my girlfriend might disagree, and has some genuinely touching and funny bits but for the most part it is just dull. Once you get over the amusement factor of a “cute” teddy bear who says things like “Fuck” and “Shit” and has sex and does drugs there isn’t a whole lot more to this film. I’m a big fan of things not being as they seem, and some of my favourite films involve cute things, behaving in ways they usually wouldn’t. However once you’ve seen the teddy do something “adult” for the first time it seems to lose it’s edge and then much of the rest of the film involves waiting for various scenes of drugs and sex involving an animated teddy bear to end so that you can get on with the rest of the story.
And there’s the second problem, there isn’t really any story. The human characters are one dimensional. They flip between different points of view and back instantaneously rather than having any actual depth or development. I appreciate that real humans are complicated and quite capable of holding opposing points of view at the same time but this film makes no attempt to convey subtlety or complexity in the characters they just go from one state to another in the blink of an eye.
Ted is voiced by Seth McFarlane who also provides the voice for Peter Griffin and other characters in Family Guy. The fact that Ted sounds just like Peter was a constant distraction throughout the film. There’s even a scene where Mark Whalberg’s character does an impression of Ted who responds “I don’t sound that much like Peter Griffin”, yes you do and it’s pretty annoying really! Watching a couple of episodes of Family Guy would have been a very similar but probably much funnier use of my time.
Overall, this isn’t a dreadful film, it isn’t as cringeworthy as some other contemporary comedy films, The Watch is a great (terrible) example of a film that just made me cringe with its attempts at humour all the way through, but it is pretty dull and the main premise gets old almost before you have sat through the first scenes.