Do not be fooled into thinking that this adult film about a foul-mouthed teddy bear will be ok for your kids to watch when it eventually comes out on DVD. Even if you think you’ll be there to supervise and monitor any of the rude bits, your fingers won’t be quick enough to fast forward any of the obscenities because they just keep coming thick and fast.
Ted is the brain child of Seth MacFarlane who wrote, directed and stars in the movie. Following on from the popular animated comedy TV show Family Guy, this is MacFarlane’s first venture onto the big screen. The star of the film is a crude, rude, vulgar, utterly non-PC, drug taking, beer swilling, perverse kids toy...and it’s hilarious. Sure, Ted has all the bad qualities of Peter Griffin but he also has the sharp wit, funny one liners and the humanity of the Griffins dog Brian.
It’s Christmas 1985 and 8-year old John Bennett unwraps the best present ever. A big cuddly teddy bear that talks when you squeeze his tummy, you know the kind with that annoying automated “I wuv you” voice. John wishes that Ted could really talk so they can be Best Friends Forever. Then the unbelievable happens and Ted comes to life but even more unbelievable is that the whole nation accepts the fact that John’s playmate is a walking talking living doll who soon becomes a celebrity and the darling of the chat shows.
We then see a montage of John growing up with Ted through the 80’s, 90’s and naughties. John eventually turns into 35-year old Mark Wahlberg while Ted is the same little teddy bear and hasn’t change much except his is now a potty mouthed slob. Ted lives with John and his long standing girlfriend Lori played by Mila Kunis, who is stunningly gorgeous by the way and voices Family Guy’s Meg Griffin. I know it’s hard to believe!
Over the years, the novelty of a real live teddy bear soon wears off with the public and Ted goes the way of many other child stars such as Corey Feldman as this film is quick to point out. After four years of going steady Lori needs commitment from John and wants him to tell Ted to move out so they can get some alone time. Can John and Ted bear to be parted? (sorry).
This film could quite easily be one extended joke but Seth MacFarlane keeps the audience laughing. I thought the guy next to me was going to wet himself. There’s a good choice of recognisable MacFarlane favourites who take on small roles in the film and some you never see such as Patrick Stewart as the very English narrator with a dry sense of humour. Also look out for a cameo by a certain hunk as you’ve never seen him before.
The big revelation is that Mark Wahlberg has a gift for comedy. There is a particularly funny scene where John is trying to guess the ‘white trash’ name of Ted’s new girlfriend by running through a rapid fire list of girl’s names “Brandy, Heather, Channing, Brianna, Amber, Serena... Wait; was it any of those names with a "Lynn" after it? Brandylynn, Heatherlynn....”
If you remember the 80’s the film is packed with references to old TV shows, songs and movies such as ‘Flash (Aaah! Aah!) Gordon’. Classic!
In the same way that everything about the content of ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ should in reality have made it a taboo novel. Ted’s lack of decency and disgusting behaviour should really make this film avoidable. But hey! It worked for me and I’m not even the right demographic. Does that make me a bad person?
3 out of 5 stars
Ted is on release in cinemas August 1.