The 40 Year-Old Virgin

Bomb Rating: 

"The 40 Year-old Virgin" is a limp effort.

This is one of those movies that is overwhelmed by its concept and falls apart as it tries to toe the line between "having heart" and making about as much fun of guys who can't get laid as is possible.

Like most guys who can't get laid, Andy Stitzer (Steve Carell) is way into comics, action figures and collecting stuff. Even though he's 40, he still hasn't quite outgrown that "tucked in" look from his elementary school days, which makes him look like a boy in a man's body. He's also something of a technology geek as he works in a Circuit City type place. What's surprising is that Andy isn't religious at all. In other words, he's not saving himself for marriage. It's not that he doesn't want to get laid. He can't get laid. Plus, we all know that churchgoers are always fucking somebody or trying to fuck somebody at all times anyway. Church is actually a great place to get laid.

Anyway, Andy's co-workers find out he's a virgin and become determined to get him laid. David (Paul Rudd), Jay (Romany Malco) and Cal (Seth Rogen) begin inviting Andy to all sorts of screw-centric types of outings where he might just fall into a vagina. Nothing works, and he ends up having some bad experiences with Beth (Elizabeth Banks) and Nicky (Leslie Mann). His budding relationship with Trish (Catherine Keener), who happens to be a grandmother, looks to be his best chance.

Where director Judd ("Freaks and Geeks") Apatow screws up -- and where his television background obviously limits his ability to see past the movie's simple joke -- is in his failure to examine the human condition beyond Andy's one problem. In a way, David has a similar problem in that he's hung up on a single relationship and can't move past it. Andy's problem isn't that he collects toys; it's that he's become overwhelmed by the sense of safety he feels in his rituals. This creates the intriguing possibility of the movie having an actual point, but Apatow misses it entirely. And with nothing else to say, the film quickly wears out its welcome and ends up running a good fifteen minutes too long.

"The 40 Year-old Virgin" is a limp effort.

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