The Red Carpet
I was fortunate to be present at the star-studded red carpet premiere of the Nicholas Stoller-directed and Judd Apatow-produced film “Get Him to the Greek, ” appropriately held at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles May 25, 2010. Plenty of A-listers were on hand to pose for photos, answer questions on camera, and interact with fans. From all appearances, the fan interaction seemed to be the favorite part for most of the stars that walked the red carpet, including Russell Brand with girlfriend Katy Perry, Selma Blair, Kristen Bell, Jonah Hill, Judd Apatow, Colm Meaney, Sean “P. Diddy” Combs, Ed Helms, Mario Lopez, Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens,and Elizabeth Moss, among others. Autographs were freely given out, and photo ops abounded as the celebrities made their way to the unique Greek Theatre venue.
The Greek Theatre
It was a bit surreal to see the film in the very location featured in the film. The Greek Theater is an historic amphitheater (open air) in the middle of Los Angeles’ famed Griffith Park. The movie screen erected was enormous, and the entire experience was reminiscent of going an old hometown drive-in theater, except this theater happened to be full of beautiful celebrities in the epicenter of the entertainment universe. And the theater happens to hold 5,870 people! Director Nicholas Stoller introduced his film with a little back and forth banter with Sean “P. Diddy” Combs who was seated in the audience.
In “Get Him to the Greek, “Russell Brand reprises his role as Aldous Snow, the over-sexed rocker from the movie “Forgetting Sarah Marshall.” In this spin-off, Brand’s character has become a chemically-dependent wash-up following the disastrous release of a patronizing, borderline racist song and video called “African Child”. Jonah Hill’s character is Aaron Green, a mild-mannered record company employee who is given the mission of bringing Snow from London to the U.S. to play a comeback show at the Greek Theater in Los Angeles. Green’s foul-mouthed and arrogant boss, Sergio Roma, is aptly portrayed by rapper Sean “P. Diddy” Combs in his biggest film role to date. The film follows the exploits of Green as he tries to control his unruly client who insists on taking every possible opportunity to delay his arrival to the gig, usually to score drugs or sex.
Green plays the straight man, if you can call it that, pretty well, building sympathy even while demonstrating that every human is corruptible. Brand does an excellent job of bringing in the laughs while simultaneously showcasing the humanity and vulnerability of his prima donna character who seemingly has it all, or can get it whenever he wishes by throwing a childish fit. Overall, the cast and director get the job done: the film is very funny. It does tend to over-indulge in its own “coolness” at times, seemingly trying to fit in a cameo by a famous, hip face every five seconds. It is also unnecessarily vulgar, but that is typical of most Hollywood films nowadays which seem obsessed with poisoning the ears and minds of moviegoers with a constantly increasing assault of F-bombs and shocking, violent, and taboo imagery and themes. In this aspect, the film raises the bar, which is not a good thing in my opinion.All that being said, despite some squirm inducing moments and a bit of over-the-top obscenity and gross-out moments, the film was enjoyable and actually hilarious at times.