There was a time when the common notion in the film industry was that the romantic comedy, usually shortened to Rom-Com, was past its expiration date as studios moved on to other stories worth telling. Julia Roberts, Meg Ryan and Sandra Bullock no longer filled the halls so that the public could meet Hugh Grant or Tom Hanks. But the genre hasn’t really gone away. It just changed.
Producer-director Judd Apatow made a handful of unconventional rom-coms as he explored pregnancy, midlife crises and growing up through KNOCKED UP, THIS IS 40 and TRAINWRECK. One of his proteges, director Nicholas Stoller, approached the romantic comedy through the lens of a breakup in the classic FORGET SARAH MARSHALL. So now that they’re teaming up again for BROS, are we to believe the rom-com is back for business? The short answer is yes!
Bros is as sweet as it is funny
The new comedy BROS comes to us from the mind of Billy Eichner, an energetic comedian who rose to fame through his hysterical street man interviews during the series “Billy on the Street”. In BROS, which AMC Theaters screened as part of the Toronto International Film Festival, Eichner plays an older podcast host named Bobby who frequently comments on the difficulties of dating in the digital age. Truth be told, Bobby is content to stay single, which – in rom-com fashion – is right when he meets the perfect person in Aaron (Luke Macfarlane).
If you know Billy Eichner’s comedy, then you understand exactly how funny BROS is going to be. There are hilarious cameos from several comedians and actors who appeared alongside Eichner during “Billy on the Street.” And the BROS script mixes in sharp pop culture references that are common to Eichner’s act.
BROS’ surprise is exactly how sweet and relatable it is, mostly because the audience is rooting so hard for Bobby and Aaron to find a way to overcome all the obstacles a traditional rom-com puts in front of them on the road. happiness. No, there’s no sprint in an airport to keep someone from boarding a plane…a rom-com staple. But there’s real chemistry shared between Eichner and Macfarlane, and when the odds stack up against them, you’ll be encouraging them to find a way forward.
Bros marks the return of major studio comedy
BROS doesn’t just mean the return of romantic comedy, it marks a return to comedy in general from a major movie studio. For years, studios have bet big on comedians like Adam Sandler, Will Ferrell, and other marquee comedians to make theatrical releases. But the landscape of available movies now leans heavily on superheroes, animated family fare, and horror. And there is room for that! But the big studio comedy needs to make a comeback, and BROS is once again making theaters laugh.
Ironically, the latest round of studio comedy tends to come from producer Judd Apatow, who finds a comedic voice he enjoys, then works with that person to build a relatable narrative. Pete Davidson took a break from “Saturday Night Live” to be THE KING OF STATEN ISLAND, and comedian Amy Schumer let the audience know just how much of a TRAINWRECK her life has become.
Apatow works the same magic as a producer on BROS, with help from NEIGHBORS director Nicholas Stoller, and they deliver a movie that will make you laugh as much as you could cry. BROS is crowd pleaser on many levels, especially if you’re a Billy Eichner fan before you buy a ticket.
BROS opens in theaters September 30, and advance tickets are available at AMC Theaters as we speak.