By: Nick Askam
I think I would’ve preferred a documentary of my aunt’s wedding that I haven’t talk to in years as opposed to this movie. There’s something so atrocious about it that I can’t quite place what went wrong. That being said, yeah, there’s almost no redeeming qualities about this film. It’s bland, boring, and a flat out waste of time. The characters are so one sided that their whole arcs can be summed up in one short sentence. Nothing separates them boring caricatures of people, so there’s little empathy that can be felt by either of them.
One of the main problems of this film is the lack of conflict. There’s almost no real problems felt by any of the characters until towards the end of the movie when it’s solved in 5 minutes. It’s like the movie was trying so hard for you to care about the characters that, at the end, you would really feel the conflict. The issue was that the problem was that every time something almost memorable would happen, the tension was immediately taken away from the ridiculousness of the situation or just awful timing. Certain scenes were so flat that they actually heightened how flat the characters were. The shots were so boring that I feel like someone who has never picked up a camera created them.
Another problem is how bland the cast is when they’re separated. Together, their chemistry works well in the fact that I didn’t hate seeing them all together. The intros could’ve been removed and the movie would’ve been the exact same. No one was memorable unless you consider awkward moments memorable. The film makes you cringe to such a degree that they’re going to hopelessly write this off as a comedy. The best jokes in the whole movie are people falling down and like 2 great one liners. Other than that it’s a lot of married couple problems or just released from jail problems or trying to get laid but you’re still in high school. I just had a really hard time relating and caring for any of the characters because the movie is so predictable that you can see everything coming.
I feel like Jeffrey Blitz had a difficult time meshing the comedy with the introductions that weren’t as necessary when he was directing episodes of the Office. I feel like the characters were set up to be people we grow with. That just wasn’t going to work in a feature movie length project because there just wasn’t enough time with the characters. I think it’s a difficult transition that most directors don’t get and Blitz unfortunately didn’t get.
Overall, I feel like at the end of the day, a decision has to be made whether you want to see Anna Kendrick get upset over another terrible boyfriend or if you want to see the surprising chemistry between Lisa Kudrow and Craig Robinson. If neither of things interest you, then I would stay away from this film as best as you can. It definitely will appeal to some, but it lacks the certain qualities to keep you hooked for more than a couple of minutes at a time. Its predictable nature detracts from caring at all for the movie. If it was my decision, I would choose to see something else.