Bo Burnham: Make Happy movie review

I’ve enjoyed every one of Bo Burnham’s specials, and Make Happy is no exception. His unique musical take on the monologue is smart, entertaining, and not always funny – and this is a good thing. There are plenty of time in Make Happy that I didn’t laugh but I enjoyed, and don’t get me wrong, there are gut splitting laughs to be had. But occasionally, and the last 30 minutes in particular, are only incidentally funny to make his performance palatable, like he’s pushing what’s possible for the comedy special. He constantly maintains the element of surprise, faking the audience out only to reveal it was a double fake out, etc. At times, it’s relatable, and you feel as though the Burnham is talking directly to you, and others, it’s incredibly self-indulgent: he constantly walks the line of being “one of the audience” and being a performer on some other plane of existence. Make Happy contains enough of his previous work in that some of the songs in the special are reminiscent of his earlier work, but not strenuously so, and the jokes have that same rapid-fire wit and irony that they’ve always had. But the comedy special goes deeper, and I recommend that you check out his specials chronologically to really get it, and that’ll it’ll be worth your while. Burnham is a master of medium, he adopts and sheds genres and comedic styles and media as his comedy requires. Make Happy is evocative enough of his previous work to please his fans and yet evolutionary enough to not be stale or boring, I recommend it wholeheartedly.