I LOVE YOU, MAN:

A conservative, metrosexual Realtor (Paul Rudd) in search of a male friend to be best man at his wedding sounds like the kind of storyline that would find its way on to a few episodes of a network sitcom. The screenplay by co-writers John Hamburg (who also directs) and Larry Levin plays out the “bromance” between Rudd (ROLE MODELS) and his fun-loving, free-spirited “bud” (Jason Segel) in the same fashion as a typical “boy meets girl” plot. Rudd’s attempts to talk and act like a regular guy are hilarious and his awkwardness in such situations are mined for all of its comic potential. That’s why Segel’s (FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL) brutally honest yet enigmatic pal with the kind of hedonistic freedom that every man yearns for is such a perfect fit for him. In fact, all of the characters in this comedy, no matter how minor their roles, are so well-developed that they could have been the main attraction in any movie centered around them. Despite all the male bonding, this flick turns out to be genuinely romantic in that the friendship between the two men leads to the main character realizing why he loves his bride-to-be (Rashida Jones). It’s also consistently funny in a crude fashion certain to please straight men who really and truly believe that comedy began with the Three Stooges and evolved from there. Both sexes will find a real dose of heart in this movie that’s never overdone or laden with easy sentimentality. In fact, it’s somewhat subversive in that you don’t realize until the final scene that you’ve watched a romantic comedy which cleverly suggests that friendship might be as essential to life as love.

MOVIES TO WATCH FOR IN APRIL: ADVENTURELAND (April 3), FAST & FURIOUS (April 3), OBSERVE AND REPORT (April 10), CRANK 2: HIGH VOLTAGE (April 17), STATE OF PLAY (April 17), EARTH (April 22), FIGHTING (April 24), OBSESSED (April 24), THE SOLOIST (April 24)