User Score
6.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 114 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 91 out of 114
  2. Negative: 8 out of 114

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  1. Aug 29, 2014
    7
    Relevant and fitting for the times we live in. Steve Carell and Keira Knightley are marvelous together in this end of the world number. Critics largely misunderstood it's wit, detail and fascination.
  2. Dec 15, 2013
    6
    Seeking a Friend for the End of the World certainly has it's moments. It is a solid movie and knows both how to be serious and amusing. However between the fact that the romance was only somewhat believable and the fact that the film seemed to rely on musical interludes as scene transitions there were many flaws. There was certainly a potential that this film did not reach.
  3. Aug 8, 2013
    8
    Dark and fun.

    Seeking a Friend for the End of the World is a movie that is very different from all the other apocalyptic movies I have seen. This movie is something else…and I like it. Steve Carell stars as Dodge, a lonely insurance agent who really doesn’t know what to do anymore with all the “apocalypse mumbo-jumbo.” At the start of the film, his wife leaves him after hearing the news
    that a meteor will be hitting Earth in three days, ending life as everyone knows. Dodge tries to hang out with his friends and party but while everyone is doing drugs and having sex with random people, not caring about the consequences, Dodge just doesn’t feel right about doing anything. The movie is categorized and advertised as a comedy and while I will say I had a few laughs in the movie, I would not call it a comedy but more of a drama with tiny bits of comedy sprinkled here and there. Dodge soon meets Penny (Keira Knightley) one day while she is mourning over wasting her life with all the wrong men instead of more time with her family. Soon, a riot breaks out and causes these two new friends to flee their apartment building. Dodge is on a journey to meet his high school sweet heart or “the one that got away” while Penny just wants to see her family once again. The film is very well acted by everyone, especially the two lead roles and I thought they had very good chemistry together. On the road trip, they encounter many different types of people which makes the movie an interesting ride. Watching the movie and seeing all the chaos going on, it made me wonder what I would do in a situation like this and to be honest, I don’t think I am ready to answer that question. Overall, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World is not your average apocalypse movie. It’s sweet, it’s fun, and it’s thoughtful. Expand
  4. Jul 29, 2013
    8
    Seeking a Friend for the End of the World is a cult classic waiting to happen. It has elements that look and feel like Garden State, Little Miss Sunshine, and other popular indie films that have premiered over the past ten years. Carell is the best he has been since the above mentioned Little Miss Sunshine, and Knightly is strangely perfect for her role. Don't walk into the film thinking it is going to be a romantic comedy because of the casting choices. This is a romance, an unorthodox romance, but a romance none the less. This film may not gain immediate acclaim, but as time passes it will grow in popularity. If you like romance Seeking a Friend for the End of the World is a must see. Expand
  5. May 29, 2013
    10
    I absolutely loved this movie!!!!! The plot to some people who live under a rock might seem a bit crazy but to me is totally believeable. The relationship(s) storyline ring absurdly true to me, for I know alot of people and have never married but dated/had relationships throughout my life. I thought Steve's dramtic acting was far and above anything he's ever attempted thus far and...he sold me and I'm a definite hard-sell. He's always been a superior comedic actor, normally stealing the movie(s) away from bigger named stars, but I've got to tell you, in this role as 'Dodge', he stole my heart with his talent in this film. Keira has always been a superior dramatic actor and this time around completely sold the bubbly, ditzy, free-spirited 'Penny' who hides her heart very well right up to the end and then just allows herself the gift of freely opening herself up to love. I was sobbing at the end of this 'little funny film', that ended up being placed on my top 15 best films of all time! You've Gotta see this film for yourself...you'll be telling your friends, family and co-workers all about it at the office water-cooler next week! Expand
  6. Mar 16, 2013
    9
    This maybe my most surprising movie of 2012. In no way did I believe that a relationship between Steve Carrell and Keira Knightley would work, but I was wrong these two might be the best on screen relationship of the year. I really love Steve Carrell in these more serious dramatic roles like Dan in Real Life and Hope Springs, I hope he does more.
  7. Feb 13, 2013
    7
    I loved this movie. Seeking a Friend for the End of the World is one of the most criminally overlooked films of 2012. The chemistry between Carell and Knightley is really special here; they both give great performances and carry the film wonderfully. Under the direction and writing of Lorene Scafaria, this film manages to make you smile and laugh, but it also breaks your heart. The film builds perfectly to a devastating (abrupt) ending, but it's fully satisfying all the while. I cannot recommend this film enough. Expand
  8. Jan 27, 2013
    6
    It is unclear where this movie might have been taking the audience, but in the end, it brings it all together in a rather truly convincing love story and a bitter reality of the world.
  9. Jan 26, 2013
    1
    A movie that tries to be a comedy and is the farthest thing from it. A movie that tries to be serious but comes across as corny. A movie that tries to be emotional but is completely empty. A movie that's is flat out bad all around.
  10. Dec 31, 2012
    3
    Watching this film I could only think of how I wished the Mayans were right about their prediction about the end of the world on the 21st December, a mere few days before I decided to watch this...
  11. BKM
    Dec 31, 2012
    6
    The movie bobs and weaves in such a way that you never really know what to expect. While that is part of its charm, it also hinders it from being a wholly satisfying experience since it seems to be pulling in several different directions at once. Still, Carell and Knightley share an effortless chemistry that keeps things afloat and provides unexpected poignancy.
  12. Dec 23, 2012
    6
    The movie presents a fresh idea, and is well-cast. Even though the movie prepared you for an abrupt ending, I still feel as though it ended unsettled. Steve Carrell is great, and this movie is definitely worthy of a redbox viewing, but I still couldn't help but feel a bit disappointed at the end.
  13. Dec 16, 2012
    7
    The occasional humor works really well in what is mostly an incredibly bleak and touching story of romance. The ending is similar to Melancholia, but not nearly as striking.
  14. Nov 23, 2012
    5
    Trust me. If you are looking for comedy then look somewhere else, because theres not very many laughs here. However, if you want a touching story with good acting and real romance, then this is your movie.
  15. Nov 21, 2012
    5
    This movie had a great cast, idea, and story. But it was not written well. Without the comedic performances of Carrel and Knightly, the movie would have been terrible.
  16. Oct 30, 2012
    5
    First half of the movie is great. Second half is slow and boring. And the romance between the two is not very relatable. If you are an ending-person (for lack of a better expression), think twice before you watch this.
  17. Oct 28, 2012
    1
    Great idea, cast, story and Steve Carell is an amazing actor! Yet, the whole movie did NOT work. It was slow, boring and not funny. The movie had alot of potential, yet it didnt go anywhere. a very big disappointment for me.
  18. Oct 14, 2012
    10
    This is not a happy story, this film will in no way end happily. However that doesn't mean there isn't great humour, joy and warmth in this wonderfully crafted movie by first time director Lorene Scafaria. Seeking a Friend for the End of the World is the story of Dodge (Steve Carrell), a man living with regret that his life has had no meaning. This regret is magnified by the fact his wife has left him and he has possibly the worst friends ever. Oh and there's the fact the world is going to end in 3 weeks thanks to a giant asteroid. This puts Dodge in a reflective mood and he thinks of his past love and whether he can see her again. Meanwhile free spirited Penny (Keira Knightley) living underneath him is torn up over the fact she missed the last flight to England and will never see her family again. Through various hijinks the two collide and vow to help each other. It's an unusual film in that the premise is so incredibly depressing and upsetting but the result is down to earth, clever and heartwarming. The film handles some serious themes but never lets them overburden the film as a whole. The discussion of mortality in the film is incredibly moving as Dodge wishes he had made the most of his life but always knew he wouldn't live long where as Penny wants to live if only because she doesn't feel fulfilled. The most surprising thing about the film is that it dares to be risque and crude in its comedy while delivering a finished product that will touch even the most cynical of people. The supporting cast is extensive and there is not a weak link in the bunch, which includes Patton Oswalt and William Petersen to name but a few. However the film wouldn't work without its two leads and both Carrell and Knightley give career high performances, especially the latter who tones down her performance to match the characters quiet yet frantic nature. It's a film that will surprise and impress with every twist and encounter right up to its final conclusion which may or may not have you weeping like a baby. Expand
  19. Aug 17, 2012
    10
    It's not a perfect movie, it's clunky and drags too long at times, but in the end this is the kind of movies that will stick with me for a long time after seeing it. The funny thing is that the movie is trying to illustrate that all the little things that bother you in life don't matter in the end, that it's all about the people and things you love, that those are the things you'll remember at the end of it all. And the movie embodies that very idea oh so well by being itself a mixed bag, but just like life it's not the pesky problems that you remember at the end, it's the good times. For this reason "Seeking a Friend for the End of the World" gets exponentially better as time goes by after seeing it, such a beautiful movie. Expand
  20. Jul 20, 2012
    8
    Since when have people done an end of the world comedy where, ironically, a relationship begins to blossom? The fact that the director manage to tackle a film like this in such a sweet and endearing way has done a fantastic job in setting the mood. It felt quite sad considering the situation they were in, but it was also quietly amusing. It felt much more dry, which you would expect from these kind of films. Despite the easy predictability of the ending, the director managed to pull it off in a despairing yet happily romantically touched way. What it made me think of is of how we live our lives in order to make us feel we have led a fulfilled one and the actions we go to when we become involved in such a chaotic event. Expand
  21. Jul 14, 2012
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Curiously, some reviewers were expecting this to be a rip-snorting laughathon. It isn't. The end of the world is not exactly comedy box-office, and this was never going to be "40 year-old virgin meets Deep Impact".

    But nor is it sombre, either. Gentle playing from two engaging leads, some amusing touches, and the question we are all expected to ask ("What should you do if you know the world is going to end next week?") is satisfyingly answered: what you should do for the whole of your life. The answer's in the title, and if that's too romantic for some, that's too bad.
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  22. Jul 5, 2012
    9
    Touching movie. This is truly for the romantics out there. And if you're not, Steve Carell's performance will make you one. His Oscar worthy performance sells it. Keira is a great support by being the free spirit. Despite the age gap, it works! Simply put, this movie is for the inner romantic in each of us, even if we're cynical of everything else. Didn't know what to expect when I walked in the theatre, but came up smiling big and feeling hopeful. Expand
  23. Jul 4, 2012
    4
    Despite the sense of urgency the end of the world might bring to a story, this film slows almost to a screeching halt by the last third. Unfortunately, two talented stars were misused and mismatched for a story that started out promising in its strangeness (showing what the end of the world brings out in people) but turns into an okay romance that uses every plot cliche possible to hammer in the point that it's never too late to find someone who moves you. It's not a BAD movie, just a terribly uneven one. Great structural gimmicks were created and then thrown away, marvelous supporting characters and plots were introduced and then discarded meaninglessly. What seems to be an attempt at anarchical storytelling (which could have worked amazingly considering the theme) instead just became a sloppy soap opera intent on being emotionally satisfying rather than thought-provoking or challenging. Expand
  24. Jul 2, 2012
    4
    Potentially charming and hilarious premise that was poorly executed, chock full of boring acting, obvious writing and zero chemistry between the two romantic leads. I do not understand why Keira Knightley gets work - she is an unconvincing and heavy handed actress. The films saving grace was its comic relief - some truly hilarious moments managed to shine through the blah.
  25. Jul 1, 2012
    8
    First off, every romantic movie is predictable, everybody knows that so don't use that as a reason for negativity in this film. Also yes, its a romantic comedy about Dodge (Carell) who meets a friend (Knightely) as he eventually decides to search for the "love of his life". Exciting plot? No of course not, so yes its going to be dull, but what you have to do is watch the film with a heart and a brain and put yourself in the characters position. Thats exactly what i did and i enjoyed this film. It was a great plot, great acting, and a good overall feel to the film. Yes the ending is awfully predictable but what ending isn't predictable these days? Unless its a movie like Fight Club with a twist ending, but are we looking for such a thing in a romantic comedy? I think not. This was a very relaxing and enjoyable film filled with good and bad emotions. I give Seeking a Friend for the end of the world an 8/10. The only reason i don't give it a ten is because frankly i expected a little more comedy involved but it was still a great film, and a nice break from blockbuster action films that fill up the summers schedule. Expand
  26. Jun 30, 2012
    7
    I thought I saw this movie two weeks ago when I saw the trailer and knew exactly where it was going. That was true for the first quarter of the movie (where they got most of the trailer) and the next hour was fairly predictable and then the movie takes a turn and it will be a movie you'll think about for a long time. Worth seeing.
  27. Jun 30, 2012
    8
    Think Dan in Real Life combined with Melancholia, except that this film isn't as good as either of those. I liked this movie, but it's not really a comedy. It's more of a apocalyptic romance with the occasional humorous anecdote. Don't expect to be laughing too much. I'm a fan of Carell and Knightly, and they both play their parts well. I was satisfied, though I think it could have been better. 7.5 rounded up to an 8. Expand
  28. Jun 29, 2012
    6
    1. just wanted to mention that I don't understand why this website is not working with mozilla firefox... 2. ok so the movie was pretty decent. I feel like it was sold as a comedy but it defintely isn't. I'm not sure exactly how to describe the genre; perhaps a loveish story. The plot and acting were good. Only thing is that I somehow doubt people would act the way portrayed in the movie if the world was ending in 3 weeks (parties, radio still playing, all power still on, etc), so that takes away a little from the plot. Otherwise the movie is touching and sad at the same time which is an interesing combination of feelings. Expand
  29. Jun 28, 2012
    4
    A meteor is hurtling toward Earth and there are only days left until it hits. A sadsack Steve Carell meets Keira Knightly and they embark on one last road trip. Although there are a few laughs near the beginning, this is NOT a comedy. It's a rather stupid romance that ignores Carell's comic gifts in favor of a bland dramatic role. Meanwhile, Knightly overdoes her efforts at cuteness. Diehard (pun intended) romance fans might find this sweet, but everybody else will be disappointed. Expand
  30. Jun 27, 2012
    10
    What a lovely, quietly moving film. I just got back. I can't help comparing it to Melancholia, which I also loved, and there was certainly things Melancholia got better (cinematography) but Steve Carrell made this one for me. Everyone was great, but Steve Carrell took it into the stratosphere.
  31. Jun 26, 2012
    4
    I thought this movie was mediocre in terms of a love story, and sub-mediocre in terms of entertainment. I could see the ending result from a mile away, but I assumed the entire premise of the movie was metaphorical. Instead, it was just like how it appeared to be. When the movie finished, my first thought was "Well, that was depressing". There were a few parts that made me chuckle, but this movie is very far from being a comedy. In hindsight, I'd leave it until it comes out on DVD or is available for streaming. Expand
  32. Jun 24, 2012
    8
    This is one of those films that just works for me. Given the basic story, such as it is, it would be difficult to make this movie work. Yet the handling of the details, the craftsmanship of the writers and actors, etc. do make it work. And it works at different levels as well. It is not a comedy, yet has moments that are very funny. Certainly this film won't be for everybody, but for a lot of people, I believe it will. Expand
  33. Jun 23, 2012
    6
    As several other users have noted, this is not a rom-com, but a true story of romance. It takes some time to get there, but it's a moving film. Interestingly, the end of the movie reminded me of the end of Melancholia, but it's not nearly as ponderous and heavy as the latter. Steve Carell is terrific as usual in a very earnest role, and Knightly is a good casting choice. There are a bunch of great comedians (Rob Cordry, Amy Schumer) that round out the cast effectively - especially during the free-for-all segments. Finally, a quick note that T.J. Miller steals the show with his role as the host at a TJI Friday's type of restaurant that's still operating amidst the chaos. He's consistently funny in every movie he's a part of (She's Out of My League, etc.) and deserves to be a lead. Expand
  34. Jun 23, 2012
    10
    This is going to be one of the true 'love-it-or-hate-it' movies of recent years. I loved it, so give it a ten. What may frustrate some is that the film (though consistent throughout) does not reveal its intentions until the last third. It isn't a rom-com. It's a flat out romance. Although there are a lot of really funny comic flourishes, it isn't a comedy. What the screenplay portrays in superbly natural but affecting dialog is the growing intimacy of Dodge (hero) and Penny (heroine) in this horrific situation. Most of this is done in subtext, as the picture depicts the various reactions ordinary human beings have to the impending apocalypse. When the picture finally opens up and reveals that its subject all along has been the relationship of these two, the effect is tremendously moving. The final moments are emotionally satisfying to a degree that few love stories never achieve. I am totally at odds with the critics who found this cliched or trite - what the hell do you expect people to say to each other as the world ends?

    Knightly is excellent. Carrell is Oscarworthy. Her character is late 20's, early 30's. His is 40ish. The age discrepancy is not crazy, and in fact works fairly well in the movie. (She has energy, he has a little more wisdom, and is mildly protective.) The picture in my view is a masterpiece. Others will disagree, but you at least have reasons why those in the 'love' camp find the picture so endearing.
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  35. Jun 23, 2012
    10
    I shall not exert much energy in attempting to convince a skeptical American audience that this little masterpiece is worthy of accolades beyond the mundane it has garnered. But in truth it is such and far beyond. This film walks one of those fine lines that require respect for drama, comedy and original thought. If you anticipate a comedy, it inhabits more than its moments of articulate as well as lower case laughter. If you admire drama, Mr. Carrel and Ms. Knightly combine to alter the consciousness of films such as 'Melancholia' and "Tree of Life'. Only the Ewan McGregor prize "Perfect Sense' comes close to capturing the essence of a humanity in its last breath. This motion picture does it all. Steve Carrel Expand
  36. Jun 23, 2012
    8
    The first point to be made here is that I certainly wouldn't choose Betsy Sharkey or A. O. Scott or the previous "users" as my critics of choice for the end of the world (though some would certainly qualify for the role of buzz-kill if I needed one.). This is a surprisingly sweet movie (an observation from someone who usually doesn't like "sweet" movies), and it is precisely the setting of this rather corny but affecting relationship element against the "dark" but never-taken-too-seriously background of the "end of the world" that makes it so effective. (Apparently some people were expecting "Dinner with Schmucks" while others wanted either "On the Beach" or John Paul Sartre.) I don't usually like Steve Carell (too glib) and think that Keira Knightley is somewhat overrated. But here Carell's basic "sweetness" (that word again) and decency shine through his deadpan performance, and Knightley proves to be a surprisingly charming comedienne. (Sorry, I didn't see the Pirates of the Carribbean movies.) The script is admittedly uneven, but there are nevertheless some great moments (esp., the lame boyfriend, but also the cop who insists on giving the tickets despite the impending apocalypse and the employer asking the few remaining employees who wants to be CFO). More importantly, it is the evolving (albeit not entirely believable--though Scott's "copping a cuddle" seems misanthropic in the extreme) relationship between the two opposite "losers in love" and the fact that, once again, the writer never takes herself too seriously (unlike, for example, Lans von Trier) that makes the movie both likable and fairly touching. Expand
  37. Jun 22, 2012
    6
    Although the film engages it's viewers by the second half with a drama that surprisingly tug's on the heart, the first half is unfunny and unengaging. Nothing can be worst then continuous gags that completely fall flat. The film is probably a 5, but I gave it a bonus mark for having the audacity to deliver the ending that it did.
  38. Jun 22, 2012
    6
    First and foremost; it should be mentioned that this is not a comedy. It has some comedic moments, but overall, it does not belong in that genre. The number one thing keeping it from that is it's overall sense of impending doom and Steve Carrell's character's reaction to the coming apocalypse. It's a very emotional film that most people won't appreciate because their expectations will be that it's a comedy. If you can get past that I think there's something to be liked. One complaint I have is with the ending. There was a point in the movie that was so amazing and so cumulative that I begged them in my mind to end it and they didn't. Instead, the movie went on for another 10 minutes and took a different direction. If it had ended earlier, I probably would have been more apt to give it a higher score. Expand
  39. Jun 22, 2012
    6
    Friend is too timid, plays things too safely, and shows us why post-apocalyptic insurance policies have their drawbacks.

    If the world were to end in three weeks, how would you spend it? Would you go to work to keep consistency? Maybe spend time with family? Seeking a Friend For The End of The World doesn't delve into that question too deeply, but instead lumbers rather weakly through
    a script that wants to be quirky/serious, yet never finds its rhythm and fails to convince audiences it's worth their time to bother. An asteroid named Matilda is about to hit the Earth, and insurance salesman Dodge (Steve Carell, 40-Year Old Virgin) has just witnessed his wife leave him to indulge herself in the final days, literally getting out of the car and running off. Dodge's boring life is immaculate and pristine, yet he's never taken the big chances, opting for safety and security in his job and marriage. He meets the spirited 26-year-old neighbor Brit Penny (Keira Knightley, Pirates of The Caribbean series), who has just broken up with her boyfriend. Her character seems peeled off from John Cusak's High Fidelity: a pot-smoking vinyl record collector and a headcase who suffers from hypersomnia (can't wake up once she starts sleeping), which is conveniently used as an eighth-inning plot point. Dodge learns that his high school sweetheart Olivia is trying to reach out to him, and so with Penny in tow he sets out to find her. There are some funny scenes along the way, including a couple of cameos and a journey to a local restaurant where everyone seems tripped out on drugs, serving unique combinations of dishes on the menu. It's a funny scene, but we don't have time for laughing as the dower Dodge has to find his lost love. Eventually, he mysteriously realizes that he must make a choice between Olivia and car-mate Penny, who he has fallen for along the way. Like we didn't see that one coming - the couple's "opposites attract" exchange midway through arrives just in time set to address this seemingly large plot hole. Dodge knows that Penny would like to see her family in London one last time, and so the two make a trip to see Dodge's father who left the family 25 years ago (cue cameo #2) but owns that plane to get Penny home. These scenes with dad are fairly touching, but it's just a play for the end of the film with no real closure for son and father. As the world comes to an end, audiences will no doubt debate the end of Friend, which I suppose is the point, but it won't make you feel any better to do so.

    Friend suffers from several avoidable but critical errors which ultimately ruin the film. Our improbable leads give off zero chemistry, with Carell arriving with nothing more than a mix of his characters from The Office and Crazy, Stupid, Love. He's really a black hole, sucking all of Knightley's high energy and charm with his blank stares and boring comments about the world coming undone and the choices he's made. Director Lorene Scafaria, who makes her debut with Friend, can't seem to wake Carell out of his melancholy funk, leaving us to wonder if she should have chosen a more dynamic male who could play boring to Knightley's quirkiness. But it's not the only thing that betrays Friend: the ending is so clearly established that our leads will fall in love from the First Act that it's simply a matter of how they will get there. Granting the audience such clairvoyance is not a bad thing, so long as you keep them invested in the characters. Sadly, this fails to happen, as there's not enough time in the 101-minute movie to form a real bond between Penny and Dodge, opting instead for the ease of falling in love because the world is ending rather than seeking a real partner to die with. Friend also suffers from other storytelling snafus: minus a few riots, the world seems strangely low-key in preparing for the end, with people still mowing their lawns and trying to maintain order. We're left with a montage of oddly low-key and emotionally peaceful events of happy people celebrating the end of the world as Carell limps his way through the script before settling on the girl next door. Once that happens, these intended touching scenes merely come off as more uncomfortable than destined. I didn't realize that the end of the world would be so soft, gentle, and boring; but Friend doesn't have the wherewithal to suggest more than that. I have to admit that Scafaria shoots a nice scene and will probably go on to make good films, but she's not there yet as a writer, as Friend never finds its voice beyond the standard and silly WTF moments of a world about to end. Friend betrays itself with an uneven story and the miscasting of Steve Carell. The enormous possibilities which Scafaria has at her command become lost fairly early, turning funny quirk to dreary and to an ultimately unsatisfying conclusion.
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  40. Jun 22, 2012
    6
    I'm torn about how I feel about this movie. On one hand it's good to see a movie that treats the moviegoer as an adult. On the other, it's a pretty melancholic movie that's not that fun to watch. Serious movies are great but I wasn't ready for it for this movie...
Metascore
59

Mixed or average reviews - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 36
  2. Negative: 3 out of 36
  1. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    Jun 25, 2012
    50
    As Seeking a Friend for the End of the World crawls toward its sentimental finale, you're rooting for that asteroid to get here, quick.
  2. 60
    The whole movie is a good try.
  3. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Jun 22, 2012
    63
    If the world were really coming to an end, we'd spend it with Knightley and tell her tag-along friend that there's not enough food for a 50-year-old virgin.