Paul Rudd is one of the most likable funnymen onscreen these days, and his dry, underplayed style of comedy seems more organic than some other rubbery-faced actors who try too hard. This weekend in theaters Rudd stars as a rising executive who must pass a secret test by bringing the biggest idiot he can find (Steve Carell) to his boss's party in Dinner for Schmucks
. Here are five other Rudd roles available on disc that keep the laughs coming.
Knocked Up: Rudd plays a guy who takes part in a fantasy baseball draft at night to escape his wife while Seth Rogen plays his pal who knocks up leading lady Katherine Heigl after a one-night stand. Rudd and Rogen take off to Vegas to get away from it all, but an intense (and funny) trip on psychedelic mushrooms causes them to face their shortcomings and seek reconciliation with their women.
Rudd and Seann William Scott star as down-on-their-luck thirtysomethings who choose community service over jail time after an altercation with a tow-truck driver. They are assigned to be big brothers to two kids—one a geek who likes a weekend Medieval reenactment society and another foul-mouthed tyke. Jane Lynch stars as their supervisor with a history of having cocaine for pretty much every meal before getting clean, and Rudd's scenes playing off her are sheer comic brilliance. He makes a perfect straight man to Scott’s wild-guy loser, too.
The 40-Year-Old Virgin: In his first on-screen pairing with titular virgin Steve Carell, Rudd plays one of Carell's Smart Tech coworkers who literally might blow his lid if he hears another Michael McDonald song at the electronics store. Rudd plays poker with Carell and the boys and, upon discovering that Carell has never done the deed, tries to help him score with the ladies.
In this ensemble comedy set on New Year's Eve in 1981 in Manhattan, Rudd plays a guy recently dumped by his girl who decides to hit the town with his best gal pal (Courtney Love). The problem is that since New Year's Eve is also Rudd's birthday, he soon loses his patience with Love's attempts to hook up before the clock strikes 12. His observations about the desperation that surrounds the holiday ("Look, I'm just gonna go home and kill myself. You wanna share a cab?") are some of the funniest moments in the film.
I Love You, Man:
In this ultimate bromance, Rudd plays a friendless guy who goes on a series of man-dates to find a best man for his wedding. His immediate bond with his new B.F.F. (Jason Segel) at a Rush concert puts a strain on his relationship with his fiancée.