*Based on a free copy provided by Amazon
A two star review raised to three stars if you happen to like any of the actors involved. A generally unlikable cast of characters moan their way through a slightly above average day in an average job, berating each others apathy and rightly failing to care about any of the essentially worthless problems they are all facing. It is true that none of the problems they have are worth discussing, but it is these which form the bulk of the dialogue and largely replace conventional attempts at a plot. But isn’t that the crippling malaise which we all suffer from? The fact that we all feel we should be doing something more, something better, but we aren’t because of laziness, misfortune, lack of talent. Having said all that, there are a variety of plus points which will make it watchable for a select audience – and bonus points for having nice cover art which has been nailed to my wall in work. The cast are mostly good at portraying themselves as self-centered, unlikable bores, tired, stressed, empty, although at least one is grating on the eye, at least one is grating on the ear, and at least one has been playing the same character the same way for most of her career. There is some humour and there are attempts at creative dialogue which, although they feel flat for me, will likely please certain sections of the audience.
That is another bone of contention – who is the film catered to? The Bridget Jones crowd? It seems much to downbeat for that, and isn’t the sort of film to cosy up and watch to make yourself feel better, unless it works for you in a cathartic way. The art crowd? There isn’t a lot to talk about from their perspective. As pure entertainment, it’s never more than ok, and I can’t see many people either recommending it or wishing to go through it again. The director has a few moderately interesting techniques involving voice overs and transitions, but it’s again nothing we haven’t seen before. So why the three stars? I’m not sure to be honest, and as I’ve spent the last four minutes writing this I’ve wavered between two and three. I picked this up largely because I like to watch smaller, unusual, ‘indie’ films, and while this doesn’t necessarily tick all of those boxes, it’s certainly not a blockbuster, or a simple drama. I also love Neve Campbell and try to pick up everything she is involved in, the good, bad, and average. She is fine here, and there are some in-jokes with regards to her life and career. It is nice to see another film appreciating the people who have normal jobs, and which takes the time to show these people and respect their dreams and desires, but as mentioned already, the characters are too exaggeratedly unlikable and similar to be realistic. You will surely recognise a few traits of each in yourself, and in the people you see around you, but it’s all too heavily handled.
So, if you want to try something a little different, if you want a basically all women cast (who, to the films credit, do not all define themselves in their relationships with men), or if you want to watch a bunch of people mope around and complain about nothing, then go for it. More viewers may appreciate certain actors, some may enjoy the humour and dialogue, and some may think I’ve missed the point entirely and love it. Let us know in the comments what you think.