When a young boy who’s lonely for a friend makes a wish that his teddy bear was really alive, his wish magically comes true. And while that’s a magical, sweet, incredible thing for a young boy… no one anticipated how things would be a couple of decades down the road. Ted would wind up being an unemployed, middle-aged foul-mouthed teddy bear with substance abuse problems. Which is bad enough in and of itself, but it’s also causing issues for the now grown-up boy.
An attachment to a teddy bear has a way of holding a man back in life.
“Ted” is vulgar, fun, and funny. The central “joke” of a foul-mouthed living Teddy Bear may wear a little thin by the end of the film, but it still has a lot of very funny moments and filth to spare. Easy to recommend for fans of partying humor everywhere.
John Bennett is lonely young boy. He’s an only child, and unpopular with the other children in his neighborhood. So when his parents buy him a teddy bear one Christmas, John winds up getting pretty attached to it. One night he makes a wish for the toy bear to be alive for real… and his wish comes true. John and “Ted” form a very close bond, as only a boy and his magical, talking teddy bear can.
Fast forward about thirty years, and John (Mark Wahlberg) has grown up. Well, older at least. And so has Ted (Seth MacFarlane). John works a low-level job at a rental car agency, and together they spend their days getting wasted and watching bad movies. Ted enjoyed some celebrity when his existence was first revealed to the country, plus he’s a fuzzy little teddy bear, so he plays these two assets to the fullest, and gets freaky with all the ladies he can. Thing is, though, John has a girlfriend (Mila Kunis) that he’s getting serious with now, and Ted is getting in the way. Not only are Ted’s raunchy appetites encroaching on their privacy, but John’s attachment to the bear is holding him back personally and professionally. So she asks John to ask Ted to move out. It’s time for he and his magical toy to live apart from each other.
The central conflict of the movie is essentially bromance vs romance with the added twist that one of the bros is actually a talking toy bear. The “girl getting between” is pretty tried and true storyline. There’s a plot element about an obsessed fan (Giovanni Ribisi) who wants to kidnap Ted, and Kunis’ boss (Joel McHale) is hitting on her at work, but these things are basically just devices to drive the trio apart or together as the storyline requires at the moment. So there’s not all that much to the story aside from the high concept.
Essentially, “Ted” isn’t quite a one trick pony of a movie, but it’s close. They do work in a great running gag about “Flash Gordon”, and lots of other pop culture references and movie allusions. The central gag though – a dirty teddy bear – is the movie’s bread and butter. Ted does drugs, hires hookers, gets into fights, automobile accidents, and a variety of other miscellaneous misbehaviors. The trailers have shown off a snippet of virtually all of the main gag sequences, so it’s safe to say that if you liked the trailers, you’ll like the movie. Ted curses like a sailor, parties like an animal, and has an extremely sardonic and cynical outlook on life. It’s a very humorous juxtaposition to see a cute and cuddly little bear doing blow and partying with hookers, as you can imagine. It may run a little dry by the end, but there’s enough there to get some really good laughs along the way. Wahlberg plays a decent straight man to McFarlane, although I think the funniest human character is either Ribisi’s psycho character or a cameo that I wont spoil for you.
“Ted” is a very funny flick, and accurately marketed, so if you laughed at the trailers, you won’t be let down by the movie itself. If what you saw there wasn’t funny to you though, I might recommend taking a pass, because aside from “Crass Bear is Funny”, there’s not that much else here to see.