This Is 40 isn't always hilarious, but it's ticklishly honest and droll about all the things being a parent can do to a relationship. And why it's still worth it.
Owen Gleiberman - Entertainment Weekly
There are a lot of loose ends and a few forced conclusions. But, then again, the acceptance of imperfection is Mr. Apatow's theme, so a degree of sloppiness is to be expected. That's life.
A.O. Scott - New York Times
There are moments of perception and sweetness, as per usual with Apatow movies. It's just too bad the movie's trajectory is formless and jokes built around petty marital resentments sometimes fall flat.
Claudia Puig - USA Today
Overlong, unnecessarily sex-obsessed and downright nasty at times, "This Is 40" feels haphazard and unfinished, despite a few moments of laugh-out-loud humor.
Michael O'Sullivan - Washington Post
I hate to say it, but if Judd Apatow wants to be a seriously funny filmmaker, he may have to leave home.
Ty Burr - Boston Globe
Much like marriage, This Is 40 is somewhat formless, and it almost never hurries up. But life is improved by having the option.
Alan Scherstuhl - Village Voice
There's a funny movie scratching at the edges of "This is 40."
Joe Neumaier - New York Daily News
Apparently Apatow's penchant for if-it's-not-broke filmmaking isn't changing anytime soon. And it's a shame, because while This is 40 has plenty of laughs, it lacks decency and heart.
Ricardo Baca - Denver Post
'This Is 40' isn't without flaws, it moves along nicely, and while it doesn't boast ... it does manage to be very consistently funny in a way that makes dramatic sense.
Glenn Kenny - MSN Movies
Here is all the plenitude and warmth and the triviality and sadness of Los Angeles life.
David Denby - New Yorker
More like "This Is Whiny."
Michael Phillips - Chicago Tribune
This is too much like a $35-million smart phone filled with kids' pictures.
J. R. Jones - Chicago Reader
This Is 40 is messy. But see it for its honest insights, its laughs, and for the terror Mann's character, as a mom defending her emotionally wounded daughter, rains down on a toothy school kid who's been sending unflattering texts.
Steven Rea - Philadelphia Inquirer
"This Is 40" is a bull's-eye zeitgeist comedy, a movie in which everyone acts like real people but funnier.
Colin Covert - Minneapolis Star Tribune
"This Is 40" tends to be about the self-inflicted problems of spoiled upper-middle class white people. Which can be sort of funny, sure. Sort of.
Tom Long - Detroit News
We aren't used to comedies that make us squirm like this. That doesn't mean they aren't worth our time. This Is 40 is.
Bill Goodykoontz - Arizona Republic
An acutely perceptive, emotionally generous laffer about the joys and frustrations of marriage and middle age.
Justin Chang - Variety
No one could be as whiny, spoiled, tasteless, combative and reliant on annoying stand-up comedy riffs as the entire cast of this film, the most disappointing one of the year.
Kyle Smith - New York Post
- Toronto Star
The movie frequently shifts from comic to dramatic and back again, true to Apatow's whiplash style but also true to life.
Peter Howell - Toronto Star
A pure, maximalist representation of a gifted artist simultaneously at the top of his game and looking to expand the form.
Jordan Hoffman - Film.com
Over the course of its 134 minutes, Judd Apatow's "This is 40" maintains the false confidence that its subject matter holds great meaning for countless people who have endured rituals associated with aging family life.
Eric Kohn - indieWIRE
Mixing topicality and improv, Apatow rescued big-screen comedy from its lengthy wallow in the trough of dumb-and-dumber -- we have good reason to thank the guy. Until now.
Rick Groen - Globe and Mail
As funny as a hemorrhoid.
Dana Stevens - Slate
Apatow does a good job of charting the uncertain waters of marriage - the tears, the arguments, the moments of clandestine sex interrupted by children, and the love and affection that are often masked by more immediate frustrations.
James Berardinelli - ReelViews
Even with all its ups and downs, there are more than enough bawdy laughs and truthful emotional moments to put this over as a mainstream audience pleaser during a holiday season short on good comedies.
Todd McCarthy - Hollywood Reporter
It's the feel-bad comedy of the holiday season - and that's what makes it good.
Christy Lemire - Associated Press
As the movie goes on, the laughs are fewer and farther between, and for the last 30 minutes, not only did I not laugh, I wanted it to end so I could get back to my own boring but less precious life.
Mary F. Pols - TIME Magazine
Judd Apatow makes comedies that count. This Is 40 doesn't build to a catharsis. Yet Pete and Debbie's sparring yields some of Apatow's most personal observations yet.
Peter Travers - Rolling Stone
At times "This is 40" is brutally funny and brutally honest. Just as often, it's painfully shrill and unpleasant.
Richard Roeper - Richard Roeper.com
The film has as much to say about family dynamics as a couple's wavering love.
Betsy Sharkey - Los Angeles Times
There's a shrillness that is admirable in theory but rather off-putting in practice. It's just not very funny.
Sean Burns - Philadelphia Weekly
If this is what 40 is like, someone needs a reality check.
Wesley Lovell - Cinema Sight
You get the impression this should have been called Here Are Some Things That Judd Apatow Is Thinking About Right Now, In No Particular Order.
Eric D. Snider
For Apatow to get to the point where Oscar voters start taking notice, he needs to start acting more like he's 40, not 14.
Al Alexander - The Patriot Ledger
...a collection of demos, obviously inessential but interesting to the cultists.
Philip Martin - Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
The most satisfying example yet of why Judd Apatow's become such a formidable comedy brand in recent years.
Michael Dequina - TheMovieReport.com
Apatow dips a toe into mature waters, and remembers to bring along the laughs
Robert Denerstein - Movie Habit
I do not find fault with these characters as I believe they accurately reflect our so-called post-modern times and they deserve to be laughed at.
Dan Jardine - Cinemania
This Is 40 (40 minutes too long, that is) is getting at something, but it doesn't get there by 40 miles-not more than 40 people outside L.A. will understand it. This is not a refinement of the frat-pack comedy as much as a tombstone for a subgenre.
Richard von Busack - MetroActive
Watching This is 40 actually feels like aging, which isn't precisely a draw.
Sara Maria Vizcarrondo - Movies With Butter
This is funny?
Greg Evans - Bloomberg News
This Is 40 is in fact, within its limits, an honest, frank, often painful film about married life, bringing up children, dealing tactfully with difficult parents, getting older without necessarily getting wiser.
Philip French - Observer [UK]
There are laughs, sure, with Brooks' unabashed moocher coming up with many of the film's best lines... but the overall results are distinctly patchy and at 133 minutes, the film is at least half an hour too long.
Jason Best - Movie Talk
( ... ) underneath the brashness, there's a tender heart, with the children just being themselves amid adults who are still in love yet in danger of losing their way.
Graham Young - Birmingham Mail
It is, in its quieter way, more pointlessly indulgent than The Matrix Revolutions.
Donald Clarke - Irish Times
This overlong comedy is so episodic that watching it is exactly like sitting through five episodes of a sitcom back-to-back. It's funny and enjoyable, with characters we enjoy watching, but they continually spiral back to where they started
Rich Cline - Contactmusic.com
There isn't enough story to float a TV sitcom; it simply consists of people bickering.
Christopher Tookey - Daily Mail [UK]
Even an off-form Apatow is better than most and this entertains.
Alex Zane - Sun Online
It's a sitcom, then, with no real story or structure.
David Sexton - This is London
This is 40 minutes too long.
Allan Hunter - Daily Express
Middle-aged, middle-class and, if we're frank, a little middling and 'medium soft', the uneven This Is 40 indulges its flabby excess of subplots, but is redeemed by some genuine belly laughs.
Anton Bitel - Film4
This is 40 has plenty of funny, memorable moments to take away with you
Stefan Pape - HeyUGuys
Imagine the funny bits left out of Long Day's Journey Into Night: that's this movie.
Nigel Andrews - Financial Times
A family drama that lacks structure and salvages only a little heart.
Nicola Balkind - The Skinny
However irritating 'This Is 40' is at times, there's a warmth that wins you over, and an honesty about families.
Cath Clarke - Time Out
The Judd-ernaut is back to make you shudder with another comedy that sometimes aims below the belt... but which survives on fair degrees of charm and hilarity, too.
Graham Young - Birmingham Post
A real step up for Apatow. His masterpiece? Quite possibly.
David Jenkins - Little White Lies
The set up and sense of humour may be familiar, but This Is 40 still manages to keep it fresh and funny.
Tae Mawson - Sky Movies
Enjoyable and emotionally engaging comedy with a frequently funny script, a likeable cast and a pair of terrific comic performances from Leslie Mann and Paul Rudd.
Matthew Turner - ViewLondon
Every scene feels like an airbrushed composite of dozens of rambling takes, and 133 minutes is drainingly long for a story this sitcom-slight.
Robbie Collin - Daily Telegraph
This is terrifically assured work from Judd Apatow. And most importantly, funny.
This Is 40 sees Apatow mistaking his personal life as the perfect fodder for another dramedy that stretches beyond a comfortable running time.
Steve Newall - Flicks.co.nz
Apatow adopts a leisurely pace, but this is a story about middle-age after all and when characters are this much fun, you won't be watching the time go by.
Stella Papamichael - Digital Spy
With his fourth film as writer-director, Judd Apatow has arguably made his most personal film yet, without forgetting to make us laugh.
David Hughes - Empire Magazine
Yet for every witty line or cool cameo there's a most Apatowian artificiality, especially considering he's cast his actual family members in these sometimes unflattering roles. This Is what? Some kind of cruel therapy?
David 'Mad Dog' Bradley - Rip It Up
This is 40 works better as light drama than comedy, with humor defusing the bombs being lobbed in the marriage.
Mark Pfeiffer - Reel Times: Reflections on Cinema
But for everything Apatow gets right, he bungles something else.
Dan Lybarger - KC Active
Apatow's works often involve stand-up riffs on a subject, dropped into a movie. When stress, one of the ingredients of actual film comedy (not a late-night spot at Yuk Yuks), finally crackles along, the story of Pete and Debbie gets funnier and friskier.
Brian Gibson - Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
I only hope that, while my body gradually deteriorates and I slowly chip away at the planet-sized boulder that is my mortgage, I can still find time to be just like Paul Rudd.
Matt Looker - TheShiznit.co.uk
Scott Tobias - NPR.org
Jeffrey M. Anderson - Combustible Celluloid
Drew Taylor - The Playlist
- Austin Chronicle
Jesse Cataldo - Slant Magazine
Peter Sobczynski - eFilmCritic.com
Frank Wilkins - Frank's Reel Reviews
Nell Minow - Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies
Brent Simon - Shockya.com
Kate Erbland - Film School Rejects
John Hazelton - Screen International
- Film Threat
Karina Longworth - City Pages, Minneapolis/St. Paul
Who thought it was a good idea to take the two most irritating characters in 'Knocked Up' and devote a two-hour-and-thirteen-minute movie to them?
Rob Gonsalves - eFilmCritic.com
Neil Rosen - NY1-TV
- National Post
This squabbling, yelling and pouting goes on for about two hours and ten minutes. Think you can deal with them for that long? More importantly, think you can feel an ounce of pity for their comic pain?
Dave White - Movies.com
Rich Cline - Shadows on the Wall
Leonard Maltin - ReelzChannel.com
Richard Roeper - ReelzChannel.com
Tony Medley - tonymedley.com
This Is 40 is funny and relatable enough to help overlook its length.
Matt Neal - The Standard
Apatow seems to be offering autobiography as entertainment, but while aiming for blunt honesty, This is 40 is simply dull.
Eddie Harrison - The List
More aptly known as "This is 40 Minutes Too Long", Judd Apatow's comic attempt at a bitter-sweet comic dissertation about middle-age falls flat.
Jim Schembri - 3AW
Every conversation feels like it's a minute too long. It's as if these characters are trying too hard to demonstrate their flaws and insecurities.
Matthew Toomey - ABC Radio Brisbane
In trying to please everyone he satisfies no one and, far from being brave, the fleeting concerns of This Is 40 are closer to cowardly.
Craig Mathieson - The Sunday Age
A sprawling but smart and generous-hearted comedy whose knockout laughs come steeped in brutal honesty.
Cara Nash - FILMINK (Australia)
Ha-has and emotional heft, hand in hand. And, for the most part, Apatow's approach pays dividends.
Matt Mueller - Total Film
It might feel a little too familiar, and even self-indulgent, as in a rehashing of jokes and scenarios that were funnier the first time around.
Todd Jorgenson - Cinemalogue.com
A tour de force of tastelessness wrestling with profoundly serious issues it cannot hope to contain
Andrew L. Urban - Urban Cinefile
This is Apatow's forte: he writes about what he knows and it smells of truth. Crass-coated, emotionally raw, highly observant and very funny
Louise Keller - Urban Cinefile
Feels even more personal than his previous works, and considering Funny People spent many minutes showing us a video of his daughter Maude's singing Memories at a high school play, that's mighty impressive.
Simon Miraudo - Quickflix
With a little more "adult" then usually found in an Apatow "adult" comedy, the film is carried from start to finish by the cast.
Michael A. Smith - MediaMikes
Apatow's biggest strength is his ability to wrangle frank and perceptive scenes into one overarching theme and wring huge laughs out of them, and he does that in This is 40 in spades.
Eric Melin - Scene-Stealers.com
'This Is 40' has moments where vulgarity doesn't impede honesty and Apatow's desire to show off his children doesn't overshadow his depiction of a contemporary family. But these moments are separated by acres of guff.
Jeffrey Westhoff - Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL)
Leslie Mann deserves an Oscar nomination for her hilarious performance.
Clint O'Connor - Cleveland Plain Dealer
Apatow can't relinquish his love of random animal comedy enough to let his dramatic sensibilities really take hold, and as a result the film is torn, trading laughs for winces and vice-versa in a way that feels conflicted, rather than organic
James Kendrick - Q Network Film Desk
Not up to some of Judd Apatow's earlier hits, but still has some amusing moments blended in with the crude humor and whiny characters.
Jackie K. Cooper - jackiekcooper.com
My suspicion is that Apatow made a conscious decision to throw episodes at us scattershot to reflect the battlefield chaos of a relationship in motion.
Jordan Hiller - Bangitout.com
This is 40 is his [Apatow's] graduation, leaving him totally exposed - and you're at your funniest when your pants are down.
Blake Howard - 2UE That Movie Show
A mismanaged mess that feels less a panoramic study of modern adult- and familyhood and more like a series of tasked self-reflections for which its creator doesn't have the stomach.
Brent Simon - Shared Darkness
A typically erratic Judd Apatow feature...
David Nusair - Reel Film Reviews
"Hey, remember that annoying couple in that Judd Apatow movie about the loser who got the hot chick pregnant? No? Well, we made a movie about them anyway."
Pete Vonder Haar - Houston Press
There is a profound tone deafness to This is 40, yet another overly long, overly whiney and overly crude exploration of Apatow's bloated ego...
Corey Hall - Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
Well-acted and well-made, but way too long and not particularly funny
Stephen Silver - EntertainmentTell
Apatow's spot-on look at modern relationships will ring true with anyone who's been married.
Charles Koplinski - Illinois Times
The film earns its stripes as a raunchy, R-rated comedy even before the main title appears onscreen.
Leonard Maltin - Leonard Maltin's Picks
Many moviegoers will identify with the couple's marital woes, but they may object to the notion that the affluent Pete and Debbi deserve sympathy for their money problems; in this aspect, the film is as blinkered as the Romney campaign.
John Beifuss - Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Frequently great when it involves Rudd and Mann tossing barbs at each other... and just plain leaden whenever it's doing anything else.
Tim Brayton - Antagony & Ecstasy
With a tighter control of his material, Judd Apatow might have made the wry, observant comedy he no doubt has in him.
Kirk Honeycutt - honeycuttshollywood.com
What we have is a man (Apatow) who appears, through his cynical story...to be facing a mid-life crisis of his own.
Robin Clifford - Reeling Reviews
At least when filmmakers used to indulge themselves, the results would be on the order of Fellini's 8-1/2 or Lucas' American Graffiti. These days, celluloid navel-gazing is more likely to be met with audience eye-rolling and shoulder-shrugging.
Matt Brunson - Creative Loafing
Judd Apatow is not a disciplined artist. And that's a good thing.
Stephen Whitty - Newark Star-Ledger
...a collection of overgrown children who don't have a clue what it means to be a responsible adult. This isn't 40. Indeed, this is barely human.
Daniel M. Kimmel - New England Movies Weekly
The performers are so likable that you stay with them even when, as is often the case, the material is hit-or-miss.
Peter Rainer - Christian Science Monitor
Surely Judd Apatow's most self-serving, egocentric, and unpleasant comedies of his career...
Felix Vasquez Jr. - Cinema Crazed
[A] contrived and sometimes callous look at two people we'd rather not see again.
Mark Dujsik - Mark Reviews Movies
Apatow has clearly put a lot of his own heart, mind, (family) and screen time into examining this specific area of life - which is both a gift and a curse for the movie.
Kofi Outlaw - ScreenRant
Gets old fast.
James Verniere - Boston Herald
The movie that's meant to be [Apatow's] most personal turns out to be his most dully generic.
Lawrence Toppman - Charlotte Observer
If you enjoy scenes of people bickering, yelling and acting like spoiled brats at times, this might be right up your alley of dysfunctional family fiction. (Full Content Review for Parents also available)
Jim Judy - Screen It!
But by making all these movies at the same time, Apatow has diluted his product to the point that "This Is 40" is mostly tedious and unfunny.
Mathew DeKinder - Suburban Journals of St. Louis
Mostly succeeds on its own merits...[but] many comedic and musical distractions pad the 134-minute running time and stray from the implicit promise of that title: the film has little to say about middle age...
Peter Canavese - Groucho Reviews
In his next movie, maybe writer-director Judd Apatow will integrate comedy and drama more smoothly or, at least, cushion the ride enough to prevent whiplash.
John Wirt - Advocate (Baton Rouge, LA)
Takes the universal milestone of turning a certain age and narrows it down through specific observations that only speak to affluent, SoCal suburbanites who own their own companies, have a foothold in the entertainment industry and fart in bed.
Sean O'Connell - CinemaBlend.com
With this film, Apatow has gone beyond vulgar humor to explore the nature of love, marriage, parenthood and family relationships in some depth, while still keeping the humor.
Robert Roten - Laramie Movie Scope
The movie lacks any kind of structure to justify its existence.
Willie Waffle - WaffleMovies.com
Once again, the insightful Judd Apatow has put his finger on Generation X. Sadly, the result is not encouraging.
Rebecca Cusey - Patheos
There's a high degree of insularity to the world Apatow presents onscreen.
Ethan Alter - Television Without Pity
Judd Apatow mines recognizable thematic territory -- after all, we've all had to grapple with that big birthday and what it represents -- and he does so with vivid immediacy.
Robert Levin - amNewYork
It's great that Apatow isn't afraid to dig deep to mine the uglier sides of matrimony, but his unusual personal connection to the material and the cast...is somewhat off-putting.
Alison Gang - San Diego Union-Tribune
"This is 40" is fun at times, but in the end is another Apatow flop.
Jolene Mendez - Entertainment Spectrum
Even though Apatow still throws in F bombs and childish scenes that would have been better left out, like several of Rudd sitting on the toilet, these do not destroy what is a funny, highly entertaining film.
Tony Medley - Tolucan Times
Edgy midlife comedy has realistic relationship, thin plot.
S. Jhoanna Robledo - Common Sense Media
Another self-indulgent Apatow wank-off...Apatow has yet to make a movie that wouldn't be improved by taking out at least 20 minutes.
Marshall Fine - Hollywood & Fine
The most horrible marriage of two horrible people raising two horrible children. If my family would act like the people in this movie, I'd sell them all into white slavery.
Kevin Carr - 7M Pictures
This is laboured. This is aimless. This Is 40. It's really quite a grind.
An utter failure, This is 40 exposes the inherent weaknesses to the Apatow approach to filmmaking. Even funny people can make an unfunny comedy.
Jonathan W. Hickman - Daily Film Fix
This is Fox's best role yet. Just as this painfully long comedy is Apatow's funniest film in years.
Kirk Baird - Toledo Blade
Gradually you come to realize you're trapped watching a bunch of people you don't like who stopped being funny a while ago.
Christopher Lloyd - Sarasota Herald-Tribune
Stupid freaking Judd Apatow, with his stupid freaking foul-mouthed and sentimental "Hobbit"-length comedies, his stupid freaking insistence on not only peopling them with his old comic cronies, but his wife and cursing kids.
The bawdy wit and crisp dialogue that were the hallmark of Apatow's Knocked Up are still present, but the conflicts feel so cushy that one gets the impression that the filmmaker is losing touch with life as it is lived outside of Brentwood.
It delivers the most laughs of any comedy this year.
Jon Niccum - Kansas City Star
This Is Unbearable.
Scott A. Mantz - Access Hollywood
Strong work from Leslie Mann and Albert Brooks rescue the project from complete disaster but the largely-unfunny and almost entirely disingenuous script mark this as the talented Apatow's most notable misfire.
Brian Tallerico - HollywoodChicago.com
This is an overindulgent, bloated, sloppy, slapdash comedy featuring a bunch of jerks, that was in desperate need of a tight script. It should've been called IMPROVISATION: THE MOVIE.
Austin Kennedy - Film Geek Central
"This Is 40" is the equivalent of a vanity license plate.
Duane Dudek - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Swings between ambitious and facile, enormously likable and sour to taste.
Kimberley Jones - Austin Chronicle
Comedic moments are plentiful, but most are not the laugh-out-loud kind; they are more the smile or nod of self-recognition that longtime married couples will appreciate.
Bob Bloom - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)
After the iffy "Funny People," this is definitely a step in the right direction for Judd Apatow.
Chris Hewitt (St. Paul) - St. Paul Pioneer Press
After copping out in "Funny People," Apatow still hasn't set the table for a meaty drama, but making us laugh is a piece of cake.
Joe Williams - St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Asks us to care about the concerns of people who obsess about the most superficial and selfish problems, with no sense at all of how shallow and unappealing they are.
Nell Minow - Beliefnet
This is forgettable.
Kelly Vance - East Bay Express
"This Is 40" turns out to be an opportunity squandered.
Rafer Guzman - Newsday
The real problem with "This Is 40" is its lack of truth, that Apatow wanted to express something about married life, and it eluded him.
Mick LaSalle - San Francisco Chronicle
What lingers are the stormy tete-a-tetes between Rudd and Mann -- a couple with whom we'd gladly celebrate the big 4-0.
A.A. Dowd - Time Out Chicago
Whatever superficial distractions may be endemic to Judd Apatow's latest film, its greater successes outweigh them. You will laugh. You will most certainly laugh.
William Bibbiani - CraveOnline
Comedy producing/writing/directing juggernaut Judd Apatow shares his midlife crisis with Paul Rudd as his standin ...and the irony may be that the film represents a midlife career crisis for the Apatow brand.
Laura Clifford - Reeling Reviews
Those tensions and the way the couple talk about them -- both comically and seriously -- give the movie its heart, but Apatow is easily distracted by the desire to cram in more jokes.
Matthew Odam - Austin American-Statesman
Trimmed down and focused on its core, this would be another notch in Apatow's belt; as it is, "This Is 40" is about 40 minutes too long.
Marc Mohan - Oregonian
Only fitfully amusing and overall rather irritatingly self-absorbed...doesn't represent much of an advance in Apatow's fundamentally adolescent attitudes.
Frank Swietek - One Guy's Opinion
I'm at a loss to empathize with the middle-aged plight of Pete (Paul Rudd) and Debbie (Leslie Mann).
Brett Michel - Boston Phoenix
Yes, Apatow's film has its peaks and valleys -- just the way life does - but it stands as a satisfying comedic riff on life and all of its absurdities.
Mike Scott - Times-Picayune
It's not so much a movie as a loose collection of mostly funny conversations; and maybe, for the holidays, laughter is almost gift enough.
Moira MacDonald - Seattle Times
Rudd gives a terrific performance as the increasingly put-upon hero, showing different facets of himself to his wife, his moochy father, his co-workers and the other people he encounters.
Norman Wilner - NOW Toronto
This is 40 is crude and dull, with a supporting cast that reminds you how utterly uninteresting the main characters are.
Connie Ogle - Miami Herald
With This Is 40, Apatow turns his audience into fitfully chuckling therapists, dealing with a raft of problems that aren't entirely sorted out.
Scott Tobias - NPR
There are few laugh-out-loud scenes. Yet maybe that's the point. That life isn't about the grand gesture but the little day-to-day details that keep us grounded and human.
Cary Darling - Fort Worth Star-Telegram/DFW.com
It's 134 minutes long, and substitutes loosely related situations for plot. But a few broadly comic moments aside, This Is 40 also captures the rhythms and concerns of real life in ways that slicker Hollywood comedies don't.
Noel Murray - AV Club
If Apatow had any deeper message, it ends up getting drowned in this mess, but that's bound to happen when you try to take a premise that might barely support 80 minutes and stretch it well past its breaking point.
Jeff Beck - Examiner.com
...an irate rant masquerading as a cute family project.
Josh Larsen - LarsenOnFilm
This Is 40 exhibits none of the pacing problems that held back Apatow's previous features, and builds to its simple, moving conclusion with extraordinary precision and clarity.
Jonathan Lack - We Got This Covered
If the goal of Apatow was to make a film that in itself was a metaphor for a 40-year-old person having a failed mid-life crises than he succeeded, if it was to actually make a good movie about being 40 than he failed.
Matthew Razak - Examiner.com
Apatow's view on family is like his movie: Love and punch lines abound, and if it all goes off the rails sometimes, everyone's ultimately better off for the slightly bumpy, very funny ride.
Sean Daly - Tampa Bay Times
... Humor that flows naturally from the characters and where they are in their lives instead of relying on punchlines and pratfalls ...
Greg Maki - Star-Democrat (Easton, MD)
It's impressive how lifelike "This Is 40" can be, putting us into the headspace of a married couple beset by tension and frustration on all sides.
Tim Grierson - Screen International
Foul-mouthed and forced, it seems that Lifestyles of the Rich, Ribald and Rowdy has morphed into Lifestyles of the Selfish, Spoiled and Stressed.
Susan Granger - SSG Syndicate
The characters' arc is ultimately sweet and self-aware.
Jim Slotek - Jam! Movies
Teetering between tepidly humorous and totally unfunny, Judd Apatow's crazy long crudefest plays like bits and pieces of a stand-up routine that would get a comedian booed off the stage.
Erick Weber - NECN
Judd Apatow plunges the stage of life for all its ample misery, just the way he did adolescence in Freaks and Geeks and quarterlife angst in Undeclared and Knocked Up.
Phil Villarreal - OK! Magazine
The results are uproarious and keenly observed, continuing Apatow's satisfying quest to inspect itchy human behavior with a pronounced silly streak.
Brian Orndorf - Blu-ray.com
It's great whenever Rudd and Mann are together and when they're not, things get dicey.
Jeffrey Lyles - Lyles' Movie Files
The Judd Apatow comedy formula might be wearing a little thin, but he still delivers more laughs than most of his competition.
Daniel Eagan - Film Journal International
Wise, hilarious ... a tremendous document of two tired, monogamous people and their search to recapture optimism among the exhaustion.
Matt Pais - RedEye
Like most of Apatow's movies, it's a half-hour too long and filled with too many side characters. Also like most of his movies, it's often very funny.
Mike McGranaghan - Aisle Seat
For those coming up on the big 4-0, relax: the events in this movie only happen at 40 if you've spent the previous few years making terrible, terrible decisions involving your money and your partner.
David Medsker - Bullz-Eye.com
A vanity project of the most thankless order.
An endurance test of mistrust, stress and simmering bitterness, layered by the type of crass humour that is unbecoming of Apatow's age.
Matthew Pejkovic - Matt's Movie Reviews
A tedious, unpleasant experience that meanders on its way to a trite, pat conclusion.
'This Is 40' takes a risk on free form storytelling, falling short with parts that are greater than the whole.
Matt Patches - Hollywood.com
Apatow's fourth directorial effort is sharply uneven, overextending its welcome by half an hour and suffering from a charmless performance by its leading lady.
Emanuel Levy - EmanuelLevy.Com
Apatow's film comes across as overstuffed and understructured, a collection of elements that hasn't really been assembled into a story and could do with the backbone.
Alison Willmore - Movieline
Judd Apatow's first stint in the director's chair since 2009's under-appreciated Funny People isn't quite the classic middle-class American comedy/drama he might have made, but it's as close as Hollywood has gotten in a long time.
Simon Foster - Screen-Space
A deadly combination of bloated, stagnant, self-indulgent and self-pitying - all of which might be forgivable, if it weren't also so embarrassingly unfunny.
Tom Clift - Moviedex
It certainly suffers from the staleness of its off-the-cuff, improv-inspired mode of comedy, which prizes free-form riffing over organically constructed comedic scenarios.
Ed Gonzalez - Slant Magazine
A midlife crisis comedy marking the milestone with a tribute to immaturity!
Kam Williams - AALBC.com
The cast gets an A+, even if their material just sneaks by with a passing grade.
Matt Singer - ScreenCrush
Judd Apatow goes for broke in this supposed follow up to his hit romantic comedy, Knocked Up. You've got to admire his zeal, even if the results are pretty uneven.
Joanna Langfield - The Movie Minute
As [Apatow's] title implies, he could have taken a deeper plunge into the main task of middle age: revision.
Joshua Rothkopf - Time Out
A frolicsome, funny, and thought-provoking film about a couple's midlife crises and how it affects their marriage, their family life, and their sense of themselves.
Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat - Spirituality and Practice
This is 40......minutes too long.
Kristian Harloff - Schmoes Know
Replete with Apatow's signature comedy.
Dennis Schwartz - Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Overall this film did make me laugh and briefly contemplate my future, I only wish it could have maintained it's focus on sweetness and humor the rest of the time.
Mark Ellis - Schmoes Know
Apatow gives us a couple who know less about each other than I do about my middle school friends on Facebook
Amy Nicholson - Boxoffice Magazine
From a bang-for-buck perspective "This is 40" gives up big dividends in laughs. Not every joke or comic situation squeezes out a spark, but more often than not they do.
Cole Smithey - ColeSmithey.com
Apatow's got a gift for writing every character in the film deeper than expected, and his supporting cast really gets a chance to shine.
Drew McWeeny - HitFix
A giant leap for Apatow-kind.
David Poland - Movie City News
A sparkling romantic comedy brimming with razor-sharp wit and genuine poignancy. It's funnier and wiser than Knocked Up, Funny People and The 40 Year Old Virgin combined.
Avi Offer - NYC Movie Guru
Funny and sweet. Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann are terrific.
Chris Bumbray - JoBlo's Movie Emporium
Underneath waves of jocularity and vulgarity lies this sentimental undertow: we may not be as witty as Apatow's characters but their lives are not too dissimilar from our own.
Harvey S. Karten - Compuserve
This relentlessly hilarious and quietly moving riff on middle-aged growing pains stands as a rare spin-off that outdoes the material it spawned from, and is Judd Apatow's best feature to date.
Shaun Munro - What Culture