Seth MacFarlane is a brilliant bastard. He is fearless and almost always unpredictable. This film has everything good and everything bad that Family Guy and MacFarlane’s other efforts have. It is hysterically funny at moments, idiotic at others, and worth a single viewing. I can’t say I’d ever need to put it back on again, but the popcorn went flying more than once and spit-takes were avoided only by exerting extreme self-control.
In the cast, Patrick Stewart, as the Narrator, and Kunis (Black Swan) really steal the show. Stewart just gets to have fun, but Kunis provides all the realism and heart to this film. Who would have thought that the air-headed That ’70s s Show actor would develop into an equally beautiful actor with chops? Without her, the broad comedy of the film would have collapsed in on itself and made it unwatchable. Instead, she keeps an outward pressure of reality to balance the rest of the story and the insanity brought to bear <ahem> by Wahlberg, MacFarlane, and the other cast members.
One of the few mistakes I think MacFarlane did make was giving Ted his Peter Griffin voice from Family Guy. Even though it is eventually acknowledged with a throwaway line, it was initially very distracting. Over time Ted became his own character despite the voice, but it was hard to step away from mentally.
I don’t think this will become a classic, but it is a great comedy “of its time” and built without boundaries or shame. Watch it simply for what it is.