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Ted 2


Stars: Mark Wahlberg, Amanda Seyfried, Seth MacFarlane (voice), Morgan Freeman, Sam J Jones, Giovanni Ribisi, Jessica Barth, Michael Dorn, Bill Smitrovitch, Dennis Haysbert, John Carroll Lynch

Director: Seth MacFarlane

Ted, the walking, tough-talking teddy bear, has married the delectable Tami-Lynn (Barth) - 'You may kiss the bear,' leers 'minister' Jones - but, to progress to parenthood, most prove that he's a real person. You've got to laugh, haven't you? Well, director and co-writer MacFarlane, who also voices Ted, certainly hopes you will, as his last film, A Million Ways to Die in the West, was a flop.

So I've got good news and bad news for him. There's the expected flow of familiar filthy fun, and a lot of it is inventive enough to make you laugh, as the little critter and his owner/flatmate Johnny (Wahlberg, who gets everywhere these days), hire green, bong-smoking lawyer Seyfried to take the case and prove that Ted should be classed as a person rather than property. The bad news is that MacFarlane has trouble balancing the serious aspects with the expletive-laden wisecracks and bravura set pieces, much as Robin Williams did in Mrs Doubtfire.

So stylistically the film may be a bit of a mess, but still there's a terrific opening with Ted heading an ensemble of Busby-Berkeley-style dancers, and some funny guest appearances, notably an almost surrealist cameo by the ubiquitous Liam Neeson. MacFarlane's grasshopper mind has a crack at pretty well everyone and everything, as well as writing a retro song for Seyfried called Mean Ol' Moon which in past times could have been a hit. You get the feeling that what this multi-talent would really like to do is make a musical.

David Quinlan

USA 2015. UK Distributor: Universal. Technicolor.
115 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 2, Swearing 3.

Review date: 04 Jul 2015