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Zack and Miri Make a Porno 2008

Critics score:
65 / 100

Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes

Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune: While I wouldn't call the role of cheery, foul-mouthed Miri nuanced, Banks and Rogen click in a way that Rogen and Katherine Heigl in Knocked Up did not. Read more

David Edelstein, New York Magazine/Vulture: It's written and directed by Kevin Smith -- and hats off to him for being savvy enough to go for a piece of the Apatow action! Too bad he doesn't rise to the occasion. Read more

J. R. Jones, Chicago Reader: There's a warm Boogie Nights-style vibe to the little family of oddballs Zack and Miri recruit to help them. Read more

Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal: Seth Rogen is totally out of control. He's been marvelously funny in the past, and will be again, but get that party animal back in his cage. Read more

Mark Rahner, Seattle Times: It's all vintage Smith -- if you can say that about a 38-year-old -- just pushed a little further. Read more

Noel Murray, AV Club: Smith ties the love story to the idea that his leads pull out of their life slump by embracing their creative, industrious sides. Read more

Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic: Zack and Miri ends up as an interesting hybrid: a sweet, feel-good comedy that makes you feel like you need a shower after you've watched it. Read more

Ty Burr, Boston Globe: Other peoples' emotional intimacy can be downright embarrassing. Here, sadly, it's also boring. Read more

Amy Biancolli, Houston Chronicle: Despite all the waggish raunch-talk, it's just not especially funny. And despite all the agile intercourse (originally rated NC-17), it's frankly kind of a bore. Read more

Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor: The adult film reenactments are fairly gross and explicit and, worse, humorless. Read more

Tom Long, Detroit News: There are laughs. Big, loud laughs. Laughs of self-recognition, laughs at social duplicity, laughs at prejudices of all types. Lots of laughs about the most basic of human functions. And many, many laughs at our own inhibitions. Read more

Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly: Of course, what Zack and Miri actually make -- and what Rogen and Banks power their way through with a cherubic energy above and beyond the call of duty for a premise so inconsequential and puerile -- is another Kevin Smith comedy. Read more

Christine Champ, Film.com: All in all it's a modern-day, Kevin Smith fairytale: a big-screen bearing, perhaps, of his soul at its sincerest and wittiest, if not filthiest. Read more

Tom Maurstad, Dallas Morning News: [Rogen's] funny, it works. Read more

Amy Nicholson, I.E. Weekly: Seth Rogen specializes in comedies where sex comes before love, a practicality that happens far more often on earth than in shiny, starry meet-cute romances. Read more

Christy Lemire, Associated Press: Rogen and Banks make an extremely likable comic pair, even though they're an unlikely romantic match (or perhaps because of it). Read more

Rafer Guzman, Newsday: If this film were about teenagers, it might seem less like an outrageous comedy and more like a mundane slice of life. Read more

David Denby, New Yorker: Kevin Smith turns out to be reverent after all: he wants to separate true love from mere copulating for money, but his story mixes romance and porn so inextricably that he seems confused, and the movie trips over its own conceits. Read more

Stephen Whitty, Newark Star-Ledger: The mood lurches around a bit, and the film itself feels a bit diluted -- as if Kevin Smith were doing Judd Apatow doing Kevin Smith. And Smith, and his fans, are far too original to settle for that for long. Read more

Elizabeth Weitzman, New York Daily News: Without the wit, raunchiness tends to feel uncomfortably forced. And the moments when Z&M works are, almost without exception, the ones that are more sweet than shocking. All the rest, frankly, feel like Apatow Lite. Read more

Kyle Smith, New York Post: The funniest movie of Smith's I've seen since Clerks. It's When Harry Did Sally. Read more

Sara Vilkomerson, New York Observer: It's hard to imagine this film succeeding on any level without Mr. Rogen and Ms. Banks as the leads. Read more

Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel: It's a slow-footed film that confirms that Smith may never be able to lift his game to that 40 Year Old Virgin level of heart and romance. He's just too juvenile to pull it off. Read more

Carrie Rickey, Philadelphia Inquirer: This one's for the Smith cultists. Read more

James Berardinelli, ReelViews: Audiences know what to expect from Smith, and he does not disappoint. Read more

Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times: Will this movie offend you? Somehow Kevin Smith's very excesses defuse the material. Read more

Stephanie Zacharek, Salon.com: The jokes are forced, almost mechanical, in their crudeness. They're so carefully placed that they feel a little precious rather than spontaneous, which ends up defying that impulsive, animal thing inside us. Read more

Peter Hartlaub, San Francisco Chronicle: The audience where I watched the movie laughed so hard that we all probably missed a third of the lines, and it was still one of the funnier movies I've seen this year. Read more

Dana Stevens, Slate: That combination of raunch and heart isn't impossible to achieve -- at his best, Apatow can pull it off -- but it requires a nimbler pen and a sweeter soul than Kevin Smith brings to this movie. Read more

Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune: It's a pleasant story, but not particularly well-told. Read more

Liam Lacey, Globe and Mail: There may not be a special movie rating for this kind of coyness, but it definitely feels like emotional porn. Read more

Linda Barnard, Toronto Star: Zack and Miri isn't very funny. Laugh-out-loud bits here are as rare as real breasts in an adult film. Read more

Richard Corliss, TIME Magazine: At 38, the grand old man of raunch talk has figured out how to make a movie that's sweet, funny and (a little) sexy. Read more

Hank Sartin, Time Out: Read more

Tom Huddlestone, Time Out: Smith may have pioneered this kind of upfront sex chat, but the Apatow team refined it. 'Zack and Miri' feels uncomfortably like a gruesome game of filth-talk oneupmanship, and it's hard to care who comes out on top. Read more

Christopher Orr, The New Republic: It's one thing for a movie to be dirty; it's another thing altogether for it to be plain sloppy. Read more

Claudia Puig, USA Today: It's a funny concept whose execution does not live up to its potential. Read more

Todd McCarthy, Variety: The bluntly titled Zack and Miri Make a Porno is a cheerfully vulgar love story or a sweet-hearted sex farce, however you want to look at it. Read more

Robert Wilonsky, Village Voice: Nothing about Zack and Miri feels terribly fresh, much less transgressive. Read more