50/50 is heart warming story about friendship, family, and how people respond to illness. It makes you laugh, tear up, and be grateful for what you have. And while it may surprise some of you to know that I enjoy that enjoy movies that don't have robotic ninjas riding dinosaurs to save the earth from aliens (that would be a dope action movie though), but in fact this is a touching comedy-drama really hits a home run.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays Adam, a healthy guy in his mid 20's who is diagnosed with spinal cancer out of the blue. The film, originally titled, "I'm With Cancer" deals with how the diagnosis impacts him and the people around him. Those people include his buddy Kyle (Seth Rogen), his therapist (Anna Kendrick), his girlfriend (Bryce Dallas-Howard) and his mother (Anjelica Huston). Yeah, I get it, you don't really wanna see a depressing movie about a dude struggling with cancer, but an autobiographical script by Will Reiser keeps thing balanced with humor and heart. It's a tough mix but the group lead by director Jonathan Levine makes sure the flick nails all the right beats.
Rogen in particular seems to be playing the same dude he played in "Knocked Up" and "Funny People," but he's more confident and it comes across on screen. Levitt's performance is very moving and I hope it gets him some love from the Academy, but I don't think it will, cause that's just how the world works, I'm not to worried though because between this and "The Dark Knight Rises" he's well on his way to being a mega star.
Ultimately though the movie is effective because of just how emotional it is. Everyone has someone in their lives that has struggled with illness and this great story manages to tap into some of those emotions to really stick with you. It makes you appreciate everyone in your life from your parents, to your friends, to even your pets. It's like the opposite of "Drive", which is about the glorification of the individual (who stomps on faces). I highly recommend it, I'll be surprised if you don't enjoy it.