When writing about Ted it’s hard not to think that talking props, toys, furniture, animals, and even cars have been a common occurrence in fantasy fiction forever, but ever since the release of Pixar’s first Toy Story film, the format has been one of the most recurring ones in commercial cinema, to the point of it having lost appeal and authenticity altogether. It’s not just the similarity of these inanimate objects or animals, but the fact that they’re structured and written extremely similarly, the way they treat the fact that they can talk.
It’s not a very original idea for the premise to mainly be that these inanimate objects or animals talk and have a humanlike life. Ironically though, the Toy Story franchise mostly has an outstanding premise that goes far beyond talking toys. Besides that, we have either terrible films that only focus on this premise, mediocre films with this premise, or slightly enjoyable films that still mainly focus on this premise. One such example of slightly enjoyable films with this premise would be Seth Macfarlane’s Ted.
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The Movie Review
Young John Bennett is an 80s kid without any friend or sibling, whose only acquaintances happen to be his toys.
This one time, he wishes for his large teddy bear toy named Ted to become alive and also become his best friend. In Ted’s case, it’s not even a matter of sleeping while the tooth fairy would come and pour some life into the toy bear, the wish is granted immediately, and Ted begins to talk right away. And even though John’s parents are completely freaked out by this, but Ted begins to become a local celebrity.
The story takes a time shift of 27 years and shows a grown-up John alongside Ted, both of who still live in Boston. John’s girlfriend Lori Collins is also introduced, who in light of her fourth anniversary with John is hoping to marry him, but considers his epicurean lifestyle alongside Ted to be an obstacle. John isn’t intent on giving up on his only friend, but after seeing Ted with some prostitutes in his place, he considers taking action a worthy option.
John then low-key separates from Ted by getting him his own apartment, as well as getting him a job in a grocery store, where Ted starts dating a coworker. Low-key because John still makes sure to check up on him and meet him by at times skipping work, which Lori is not happy to hear. Things get worse when Lori is invited to a party alongside John by her manager, but co-incidentally, Ted does a party in his own apartment and invites Sam J. Jones, meeting who is an opportunity John won’t let go of.
Things go south between John, Lori, and Ted that one day, with the hope now being at least the reuniting of at least two of them. On top of that, there’s Donny, a mentally unstable stalker who has always been influenced by Ted and makes things worse for the three of them. Ted on the other end tries to make up for everything he ruined.
Ted isn’t very well-written, but it’s extremely funny, and not only due to the context alone. The screenwriting trio of Seth MacFarlane, Alec Sulkin, and Wellesley Wild deserves minor applause.
The comedic aspects of it are written nicely, with some of the dialogues and scenes being downright hilarious, but the script itself is relatively corny. Either way, due to the nuance of the comedy alone, Ted’s script gets a minor thumbs-up just like the movie itself does. Macfarlane’s direction knows how to comedically present the film too. Walter Murphy’s original score also complements the film’s nature quite well.
It’s not really a great comedy film, but it’s one of the most enjoyable films that fail to be authentic. It’s cleverly written in terms of comedy and has some funny characters, but that’s about it. It’s not a film to recommend someone, but nothing to judge others for liking either.