“Boston sure loves it when their native sons do good. We go nuts over Tom Brady, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, and of course, the Wahlbergs. Mark Wahlberg hit the Boston trifecta a couple years ago with Ted by 1-being a hometown homeboy, 2-starring in a movie that takes place and was filmed in Boston, and 3-that movie being just as rude and crass as all us Massholes. It stands to reason that when that movie did well, the whole city would be on board for another round.
Last summer, a casting call was put out in wide circulation around the city, calling for extras for this movie. We were to show up at a designated location during a specified time frame. For bonus points, people could show up in superhero costumes to be considered for a particular segment. I had a tight schedule that day, needing to drive off to a friend’s wedding in NH by early afternoon, but of course, I wasn’t gonna miss this. I bus-ed down there about an hour early, and waited in what was already a ridiculously long line.
I saw all sorts of characters walk by me. And by characters, I both mean costumes and, let say “”interesting”” people. Pretty soon the line started moving rather quickly. Forms were being passed out to be filled in while waiting. All that ended up happening was we were ushered in to a room where we dropped off our forms, and that was it. The costumed folks had a longer wait, since they were supposed to be vetted and photographed one at a time.
Over the course of the summer, I didn’t hear too much. There were only about 2 or 3 calls for extras put out, most during working hours and very last minute. I signed up for the first, planning my day around it, and heard nothing. By midday, they were asking for people, but I was already deeply involved in my work day. I started getting automated texts as well as the emails, so I finally gave in and responded, telling the boss lady I was likely leaving a couple hours early. Except I never got a follow up notice, so it never happened for me. I never heard back on the other dates, or on the times I’ve signed up for subsequent films. Coincidentally, I just came back from a similar casting call for the new Ghostbusters. Hopefully I’ll have more excitement to write about that film.
The internet had posted photos of where that first big day of filming had taken place, so I watched the movie attentively, trying to see the scene where I was denied my feature film debut. Towards the end, there was a scene that involved a huge amount of people standing outside the courthouse, which is likely the scene in question. There were so many faces in the crowd, you couldn’t really distinguish any. So I guess I didn’t miss a whole lot.
Well how about the rest of the film? Eh. I adore Seth MacFarlane, and I respect him for showing no fear with his comedy, and I love being shocked by offensive yet clever humor, but this movie just wasn’t really doing it right. So much of it felt forced. And I can certainly understand why. The first one was basically a giant experiment, with a total don’t-give-a-\m/ attitude, but now there were expectations–high ones. And so it all felt kinda forced. MacFarlane wrote some extreme jokes that were more shocking than funny. Wahlberg’s attempt at trying to get more humor meant him going louder and bigger, but not necessarily better. While I liked Amanda Seyfried’s character, the romantic plotline felt unnecessary and contrived.
Still, one wonderful thing about MacFarlane is that even when 95% of his stuff doesn’t land, the 5% that does is incredible. There were a few really great pop culture references I adored and a few laugh out loud OMG-they-just-went-there moments. You had to sit thru a lot to get to those moments, but as someone who loves that dirty water (Boston, you’re my home), at least I could see my city on display throughout much of the film.
PS – The superheroes were for a big scene at NY Comic Con. No, I didn’t recognize anyone, but I doubt I’d have remembered them anyway
Ted 2- \m/ \m/ \n”