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Funny People

George Simmons is a famous stand-up comedian, who learns that he has a terminal illness and less than a year to live. When, he meets Ira, a struggling comedian at a comedy club where both the comedians are performing, George hires Ira to be his personal assistant and opening act at his performances. The two forge a close friendship as George helps Ira with his career and Ira helps George find closure in his legacy. However, when George learns that his disease has gone into remission and an ex-girlfriend… Show more

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July 31, 2009 - Boston.com - Ty Burr, Globe Staff

It is, I guess, an unbreakable law of show business physics that if you keep telling someone he’s a comedy genius, he’ll disavow the comedy and obsess about the genius. He’ll get serious, as if the gift of transporting audiences with laughter weren’t profound enough on its own. Down this road have gone Charlie Chaplin, Jerry Lewis, Woody Allen, Robin Williams, and many, many more, and now it’s Judd Apatow’s turn. Apatow, the director of “The 40-Year-Old Virgin’’ and writer-producer of countless bad-lad farces, may not stand with the above company, but at the moment he’s about the best we’ve got, and “Funny People’’ is his cri de coeur. Today’s lesson: Being funny isn’t any fun.

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