Ted: "You're My Best Friend, John"

Director: Seth MacFarlane
Writer:    Seth MacFarlane
               Alec Sulkin
               Wellesley Wild
Starring: Mark Wahlberg
               Mila Kunis
               Seth MacFarlane
               Giovanni Ribisi
               Joel McHale
               Patrick Warburton
               Jessica Barth
               Alex Borstein
               Jessica Stroup
Rating:    ****

Release Date: 01/08/12

When you hear the name Seth MacFarlane, you instantly think of inappropriate jokes, violent/gross gags and outrageous animated characters. You will also associate him mainly with television; for those who don't know his work, he is the creator of the hit shows Family Guy, American Dad and The Cleveland Show. But now he is moving onto bigger and more adventurous projects, with Ted being his first feature film and first live action project. It is pretty different to what we usually expect from him, but it still has his outrageous stamp all over it, and it is just as wickedly funny as his other work.

Mark Wahlberg & Seth MacFarlane
We are first introduced to John (Wahlberg) when he is about 10 years old. He is a lonely little boy who wants nothing more than for his teddybear to come to life and be his friend. Little does he know that on one fateful day, when he wishes hard enough this comes true, and his life is to be changed forever. The film then cuts to present day, and John and Ted (MacFarlane) are now spending their days slobbing around, smoking weed and swearing like a pair of sailors. Trying her hardest to keep the pair in check is Lori (Kunis), John's extremely understanding girlfriend who spends her life biting her lip and trying to put up with the raucous pairs immature behaviour.

The living situation soon becomes to much for Lori, so she asks John to get Ted to move out and live their lives separately, and for John to start to grow up. When John betrays Lori (by indulging in some cocaine and going on a hilarious trip), she ends it with him, splitting the couple up, as well as John and Ted. As Ted tries to fend for himself in the big city, he soon finds himself in a spot of bother when a father (Ribisi) and his son become obsessed with Ted and want him for themselves. They kidnap Ted and the little boy tortures and injures him; as soon as John hears of Ted's peril he and Lori reunite to save Ted, but will it be too late?

The story is definitely one that has been told many times before, and will be retold in years to come, but it is the filthy comedy and terrific performances given by the cast that really set it apart from all similar comedies. Kunis and Wahlberg instantly click on camera and their chemistry both emotionally and comically is absolutely spot on. They bounce off of each other so naturally that the laughs come one after the other and you barely get time to breathe in between guffaws. Also bringing in the biggest laughs for me was Seth MacFarlane voicing Ted with absolute perfection, he knows how to voice characters after years of experience on his shows, but there is something so fresh and revitalised about his newest creation; something that I can't put my finger on, but I can't fault it either.

Mila Kunis
While on the subject of MacFarlane, for his first feature length film and his live action directorial debut, he has done an absolutely fantastic job. Each scene is packed with visual gags and enough grotesque (and sometimes offensive) humour that their is never a dull moment, because of this the film never drags and everything flows with ease. I also like the his use of a upbeat orchestra playing over the film, rather than generic pop music, it is something he uses in his TV shows, and it works just as well on the big screen too.

All in all, Ted is an entertainingly dark, rude and laugh-out-loud funny film that kept my attention throughout and even had me on the edge of my seat during the dramatic climax. OK, the storyline isn't exactly original but there is enough heart underneath the recycled story and outlandish comedy that you route for the characters and enjoy watching their lives play out infront of your eyes. The performances are terrific, and even the supporting cast (including Joel McHale, Jessica Stroup and Family Guy castmates, Alex Borstein and Patrick Warburton) give it their comedic all, and really ham it up for the cameras. If you enjoy a dirty comedy that will leave you wanting more (and feeling a bit violated afterwards) then Ted is most certainly for you.

 Ted - Red Band Trailer