“Ted” was “Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane’s first feature film, co-writing and directing the tale of a foul-mouthed teddy bear who comes to life. Saying the film was a success is an understatement, so it’s no surprise that – 3 years later – we have “Ted 2”. What is surprising is that this sequel is so much funnier than the original.
MacFarlane jumps right into “ Ted 2” with the wedding of Ted and grocery store co-worker Tami-Lynn. This is followed-up with an elaborate opening credits Busby-Berkeley musical production number that sets the tone – and put the biggest smile on my face. The story then flashes forward about a year, and Ted and Tami-Lynn are struggling with their marriage. They decide that the only way it can be saved is by having a baby.
Now, obviously, Ted cannot be the biological father to a child, and efforts to find a donor to fill that role don’t exactly go smoothly, so the couple turns to adoption. However, those plans hit a roadblock when Ted is determined by the state of Massachusetts NOT to be a real person, but rather “property”. So Ted and best friend Johnny (Mark Wahlberg returns) decide to sue the government for the bear’s civil rights, and rookie lawyer Samantha Jackson (played by Amanda Seyfried) is picked to take the case.
“Ted 2” is easily one of the top five comedies I’ve ever seen. In fact it’s really two movies: The legitimate story, filled with clever dialogue and nice tie-ins to the original. And then there are dozens of brief comedy bits that MacFarlane inserts throughout the film that are consistently outrageous and hysterical. SO MUCH is thrown at the screen and nearly all of it works. Yes, most of the jokes and scenes are offensive and filled with drug use and f-bombs, but together, the random references, props, insults and physical gags, raise “Ted 2” to the level of ridiculously entertaining.
The courtroom scenes are hilarious and the escapade at a fertility clinic may have you in tears from laughing so hard. Tack on appearances by some A-list stars, including the great Morgan Freeman – and what can you say? There are also unforgettable celebrity cameos and vignettes, again many that have absolutely nothing to do with the core story, but it doesn’t matter. This is one of those films that, 20-years from now, people will be recreating scenes and quoting lines. There’s Ted and John’s version of the “Law & Order” theme song, a trip they take to a comedy club, a “Jurassic Park” tribute, and I’ll never be able to hear the name “F. Scott Fitzgerald” again without laughing. In fact, I can’t remember the last comedy that made me laugh this hard and this often.
MacFarlane proves, once again, that he can pretty much get away with anything as long as audiences think it’s funny. If you thought “Ted” was wild, “Ted 2” tops it in every way. This is clearly the frontrunner for funniest film of 2015.
On The Official LCJ Report Card, “Ted 2” gets an A-.
Running Time: 115 min.