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Bad Neighbours
Genre Comedy

"Neighbours, everybody needs good neighbours...", the cheerful theme of the long-running Australian soap drama, is a haunting refrain to some who have experienced nightmare neighbours. While most of us would be quite happy with the prospect of sharing a street with the likes of Kylie Minogue, Guy Pearce, Jason Donovan or Natalie Imbruglia - we're often confronted with a much harsher reality.

While Neighbours is allegedly based on true stories, it's a gentle stroll in the park, next to Bad Neighbours starring Seth Rogen and Zac Efron. We've all had some sort of bad experience with a neighbour, and love-them-as-much-as-we-love-ourselves we try, sometimes... there's no getting through. Barking dogs, boundary walls, noise pollution, parking, refuse bin day - it's a small miracle we manage to co-exist as we do.

Thankfully, watching Bad Neighbours helps put things in perspective. Frat housemates or new homeowners, there's a bit of fun for everyone accustomed to degenerate humour in Seth Rogen's latest comedy that takes bad neighbourliness to the next level. After a frat house moves in next door to a couple with a baby, things start to get ugly when their child discovers a used condom in their garden.

It's a simple set up, but the comedy is all invested in the cat-and-mouse game of one-up-manship. They may not be as violent as Tom and Jerry, but Seth Rogen and Zac Efron have enough star and fire power to turn a matter of common decency into an all-out frat style war zone similar to Project X. They both have the street cred from previous comedies and aren't afraid to go Van Wilder on each other.

As you can imagine Bad Neighbours is far removed from anything starring Jack Lemmon. Nicholas Stoller directed Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Get Him to the Greek and The Five-Year Engagement. If you've seen any of his films, you'll know the humour is progressive to outrageous, featuring full frontal nudity, gross out gags and crude sexuality. The couple with the baby help tone things down a bit, but it's still down-and-dirty. While not suitable for most grandmas, it is undeniably funny to anyone who can appreciate a brainless frat comedy.

Seth Rogen is completely committed to being a lovable loser opposite Zac Efron. He doesn't mind taking one for the team if it means getting a bigger laugh and delivers some terrific moments with his unmistakable brand of comedy. Zac Efron is the pretty boy, the captain of the team and a worthy Robin to Batman. He's his usual charming, good-looking self, turning up the heat on the showdown and giving as good as he gets.

The mix of frat boy tradition and baby comedy make Bad Neighbours seem like a college sequel to Superbad vs. Knocked Up. Dave Franco, Christopher Mintz-Plasse and Rose Byrne throw their weight behind the ridiculous comedy - adding an extra layer of credibility and supporting the two main players in executing their ridiculous game plans. Byrne has a controlling influence, echoing Bridesmaids, and makes a refreshing break from simply being a shocked on-looker.

Bad Neighbours is pretty mindless, but it's sure to get you laughing, taking you down a wild path that will actually make you realise how insignificant your neighbour problems really are. Fans of Seth Rogen's family vs. frat comedy will not be disappointed and based on the response, there's sure to be a sequel. If you're easily offended, don't bother, but if you've enjoyed any of the movies mentioned in this review, this one's not to be missed.

The bottom line: Fratastic

7.00/10 ( 1 Vote )
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