Ted Directed by: Seth MacFarlane Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, Seth MacFarlane Rating: R Release Date: July 13, 2012
TRAILER SCORE: 8/10
Thoughts by TSR: I’m shocked. As someone who thinks Seth MacFarlane’s shtick has worn out its welcome, I’ve had no interest in Ted. But then I watched this trailer and something happened. I laughed. Not just chuckling, as is often the case, but actual laughter. Well played, Mr. MacFarlane.
I credited MacFarlane just now – and he deserves it, as he wrote, directed and provided Ted’s voice – but most of my favorite moments have Mark Wahlberg front and center. Sure, Ted is present for the thunder song, but it’s Wahlberg who makes it work for me. The other standout moment is when Wahlberg rattles off all the “white trash names.” That’s a funny bit that Wahlberg completely nails. A lot of people dislike him, but he excels at this kind of character. One of my favorite performances by the actor is I Heart Huckabees, and he looks to be in that mode once again.
Wahlberg is the star, but Ted does have a few choice lines. My only issue is MacFarlane is essentially doing Peter Griffin’s voice. While not a deal breaker, it is a bit distracting at times. On top of the laughs there is also some surprisingly good animation for the Ted character. It’s not always seamless, but it never feels like Wahlberg is acting by himself.
I could imagine the premise wearing thin – a teddy bear using a bong can’t stay amusing forever – but this red band trailer has achieved the unthinkable: it has made me actively want to see something created by Seth MacFarlane.