Forgetting Sarah Marshall

As the summer term gets under way, it is likely that most of us will be busy with revision, deadlines and exams; with little time to spend lazing around scanning Netflix. So, I thought I’d review the, relatively short but worthwhile watch, Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Written by protagonist, Jason Segel, the film is uplifting and brilliantly witty, with excellently crafted cast dynamics.

The plot kick starts with Peter Bredder (Segel) being dumped by his girlfriend of five years and successful TV actress, Sarah Marshall (Kristen Bell). The opening scene instantly paints a picture of what to expect in this tropical raunchy comedy. Due to being dumped, Segal, to recover from his emotional breakdown, is encouraged to, ‘fill the void’, left by Sarah, by going out and meeting girls. However, stepbrother Brian, believes a vacation would be a better idea, Peter decides on Hawaii due to his ex’s fondness of the island.

The consequences of picking a destination appealing to an ex are soon found out as Peter bumps into Sarah while checking in at the same resort she is staying at with new partner (and ludicrously sex-obsessed) British pop singer Adlous Snow (Russell Brand). The awkward encounters are a constant theme; each one being more awkward than the last. Out of pity for the clearly upset and lonely Peter, receptionist and local Hawaiian, Rachel (Mila Kunis) books Peter into a suite to get over his recent heartbreak. As Peter explores the island he meets several people, including: honeymooners, a care-free surf instructor and a super fan of Sarah’s new man, Adlous. The film creates a sense of being on a real holiday on a small resort by continually stumbling across familiar faces at communal places like the beach and restaurant, and it is these encounters where the best of the humour takes place with a particularly awkward double date involving Peter and Sarah. The plot begins to develop around Peter’s new relationships, particularly new love interest Rachel, while he remains a part of a love triangle with Marshall and Snow. Peter begins to fall for Rachel, yet the opportunity of re-coupling with Sarah remains a temptation too great to simply ignore.

The film is enjoyable from start to finish with goofy dialogue and awkward meetings, while also teasing at what possible activities lie ahead in summer; the humour of this film should, I hope, provide some light at the end of the tunnel darkened by long library sessions and last minute revision.

by Henry Burgess


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