Luke and Kate are coworkers at a brewery who spend their nights drinking and flirting heavily. One weekend away together with their significant others proves who really belongs together and who doesn't.
After a break up, Jenny moves in with writer Kelly, her filmmaker husband, and their child. Despite a rocky start, Jenny's influence helps Kelly realize that an evolution in her life, career and relationship is necessary for her happiness.
Iris invites her friend Jack to stay at her family's island getaway after the death of his brother. At their remote cabin, Jack's drunken encounter with Hannah, Iris' sister, kicks off a revealing stretch of days.
Dispatched from his basement room on an errand for his widowed mother, slacker Jeff might discover his destiny (finally) when he spends the day with his unhappily married brother as he tracks his possibly adulterous wife.
With a job traveling around the country firing people, Ryan Bingham enjoys his life living out of a suitcase, but finds that lifestyle threatened by the presence of a new hire and a potential love interest.
Luke and Kate are co-workers at a Chicago brewery, where they spend their days drinking and flirting. They're perfect for each other, except that they're both in relationships. Luke is in the midst of marriage talks with his girlfriend of six years, Kate is playing it cool with her music producer boyfriend Chris. But you know what makes the line between "friends" and "more than friends" really blurry? Beer. Written by
I've been highly anticipating this in the hopes that it would be this year's Celeste & Jesse Forever and it didn't disappoint at all: it's more light-hearted and less penetrative, but has the same keen eye for relationship dynamics, sly humor, realistic characters and fantastic soundtrack. It's the most true-to-life romantic comedy I've seen in years. The characters were so relatable, totally reminded me of people in my life, and Joe Swanberg doesn't need plot twists or external drama to push the story along because it unfolds so naturally through the character interactions and developments.
It doesn't dig very deep into its characters, but I felt that was accurate and appropriate: we don't know much about the characters because they don't let people get to know them. Daily interactions are shallow, jokey; the deep conversations and self-revelations only really happen at 4am by a bonfire after a few drinks. I think the film would have been much worse if it had a Katherine-Heigl-movie moment of all the characters spilling their feelings and wants and grievances to each other because that is not how life goes - at least not for these people.
Olivia Wilde is outstanding and while it's not the powerhouse role I've been waiting for her to take on, it does further establish her as an impressively natural and charismatic talent simply in need of the right roles. She's hilarious and buoyant and handles her dramatic moments - however fleeting or quiet - with expert skill. Jake Johnson was the perfect match for Wilde as they have incredible chemistry and their charming banter keeps the movie energized. Anna Kendrick basically plays herself, but she's very good, as is Ron Livingston with a curiously enigmatic performance.
It won't appeal to everyone, because as it is so realistic, not much happens. It's more focused on the almosts and the might-have-beens than the happeneds. But it's so delightful, funny, observant, and coyly ambiguous, I really hope people give it a chance. It's not going to revolutionize cinema or anything but it has an authenticity, spark and lively wit that the genre generally eschews in favor of saccharine clichés and melodramatic crying scenes.
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