Table 19 (2017)

Table 19
Director: Jeffrey Blitz
Writer: Jeffrey Blitz
Cast: Anna Kendrick, Lisa Kudrow, Craig Robinson, Stephen Merchant, June Squibb, Tony Revolori, Margo Martindale, Wyatt Russell, Rya Meyers, Charles Green, Thomas Cocquerel
Seen on: 2.10.2020

Plot:
Eloise (Anna Kendrick) has been debating with herself whether she should attend the wedding of her (former?) best friend after her boyfriend – the bride’s brother and best man – Teddy (Wyatt Russell) dumped her. Over a text. Relegating Eloise from Maid of Honor to outcast at the wedding. In the end, she can’t stay away and ends up at the dreaded Table 19 – where all the guests sit that nobody expected or wanted to actually show up. Bina (Lisa Kudrow) and Jerry Kepp (Craig Robinson), Jo Flanagan (June Squibb), Walter Thimble (Stephen Merchant), and Renzo Eckberg (Tony Revolori) share Eloise’s fate and bring their own issues. As the wedding goes on and Eloise’s natural penchant for drama comes out more and more, things turn from awkward to outright catastrophic for them all.

I didn’t have high expectations for Table 19, but Anna Kendirick was ultimately enough of a draw for me to give it a go. And in some ways, it did surpass my expectations, but mostly it’s the cinematic equivalent of a cheap snack: pleasurable enough as long as it lasts, but gone from memory as soon as its over.

The film poster showing a fork holding up a wedding invitation. The fork has five tines, the middle one is the only tine in front of the invitation.
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Re-Watch: Easy A (2010)

Easy A
Director: Will Gluck
Writer: Bert V. Royal
Cast: Emma Stone, Penn Badgley, Amanda Bynes, Patricia Clarkson, Stanley Tucci, Malcolm McDowell, Thomas Haden Church, Lisa Kudrow, Dan Byrd, Cam Gigandet, Fred Armisen
Seen on: 29.11.2019
[Here’s my first review.]

Content Note: sexual assault, abuse

Plot:
Olive (Emma Stone) is a good student, though not a particularly popular one. But when a rumor is started that she sleeps around, it puts a quick end to her going unnoticed. Not content with just accepting the sexist double standard, Olive gets into a catfight with the religious do-gooder Marianne (Amanda Bynes), poses as a sex partner for various guys (who are gay or unpopular) and causes general mayhem at her school.

For whatever reason, I had it in my head that I had kinda not liked Easy A all that much when I first watched it (reading my review from back then, that seems not to be true) and that I wanted to give it another try because everybody else seemed to love it so much. Having done so now, I can confidently say that it is a fun film with even some feminist attempts, but it does have problems and I am still not sure why Easy A is the cult classic it seems to have become.

The film poster showing Olive (Emma Stone) in front of a blackboard. There are misogynist curses on the blackboard with arrows pointing at her. She holds a sign that reads: The rumour-filled totally FALSE account of HOW I RUINED my flawless reputation.
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Booksmart (2019)

Booksmart
Director: Olivia Wilde
Writer: Emily Halpern, Sarah Haskins, Susanna Fogel, Katie Silberman
Cast: Kaitlyn Dever, Beanie Feldstein, Jessica Williams, Jason Sudeikis, Lisa Kudrow, Will Forte, Victoria Ruesga, Mason Gooding, Skyler Gisondo, Diana Silvers, Molly Gordon, Billie Lourd, Maya Rudolph
Seen on: 18.11.2019

Plot:
Amy (Kaitlyn Dever) and Molly (Beanie Feldstein) are best friends who are nearing the end of high school. They had decided early on that they’d work hard in school to get into the best colleges and that partying could come later. But seeing as their less focused colleagues also got into good schools, they start to doubt their approach so far and decide to live it up this last weekend before finishing high school. But it’s not as easy to get down to party as they thought, especially when you try to fit all the parties you didn’t have into one night.

Booksmart came with a lot of buzz and while I really, thoroughly enjoyed it, the buzz may have been a little too much, leaving me with a faint feeling of “that’s it?”. But the good parts definitely outweighed that.

The film poster showing Molly (Beanie Feldstein) and Amy (Kaitlyn Denver) in matching overalls.
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The Boss Baby (2017)

The Boss Baby
Director: Tom McGrath
Writer: Michael McCullers
Based on: Marla Frazee‘s book
Cast: Miles Bakshi, Alec Baldwin, Steve Buscemi, Jimmy Kimmel, Lisa Kudrow, Tobey Maguire
Seen on: 7.4.2017

Plot:
So far, Tim (Miles Bakshi) has had a great life as an only child. But everything changes when his parents (Jimmy Kimmel, Lisa Kudrow) bring home a little brother for Tim. Only that there is something strange about the baby (Alec Baldwin). Tim catches him talking like an adult – and a pretty obnoxious one at that – and he obviously has something planned. And maybe his plans and Tim’s wish to be an only child are actually not that different from each other.

The Boss Baby is not the greatest (children’s) film ever, but it’s cute and entertaining. The kids with me were very entertained and the adults got a couple of jokes, too.

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The Girl on the Train (2016)

The Girl on the Train
Director: Tate Taylor
Writer: Erin Cressida Wilson
Based on: Paula Hawkinsnovel
Cast: Emily BluntHaley BennettRebecca FergusonJustin TherouxLuke EvansEdgar RamírezAllison JanneyLisa Kudrow
Seen on: 3.11.2016

Plot:
Rachel (Emily Blunt) takes the same train to work every day. And every day she sees Megan (Haley Bennett) who lives a few houses down from the one Rachel used to live with her now ex-husband Tom (Justin Theroux). Tom left her for Anne (Rebecca Ferguson) and they still live in that house with their new baby. Rachel becomes rather obsessed with Megan, catching three seconds of her life every day. And then she hears that Megan went missing. Rachel wants to help, but she is also worried about herself because she lost the memory of the night Megan went missing and just knows that she woke up dirty and with blood on her hands.

The Girl on the Train tries very much to hit the same lane as Gone Girl but fundamentally misunderstands what made Gone Girl so great. It was a frustrating experience.

[SPOILERS for The Girl on the Train and Gone Girl]

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Paper Man (2009)

Paper Man is the first movie by Kieran and Michele Mulroney, starring Jeff Daniels, Emma Stone, Lisa Kudrow, Kieran Culkin and Ryan Reynolds.

Plot:
Richard (Jeff Daniels) has published his first novel to great critical acclaim and is now stuck with writing his second. Therefore, he and his wife Claire decide that he should go to a summer home (in winter) to maybe find the necessary peace and quiet there. Even though Claire stays in the city, Richard is not alone: he is accompanied by his imaginary friend since childhood, Captain Excellent (Ryan Reynolds). But it seems that just a change of scenery is not enough to help Richard. It’s only when he meets local teenager Abby (Emma Stone) that things really start to change – for both of them.

I absolutely loved Paper Man. I loved it way more than I thought I would. It’s funny, it’s touching, it’s well-acted and all-around awesome.

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Easy A (2010)

Easy A is Will Gluck‘s newest film, starring Emma Stone, Amanda Bynes, Patricia Clarkson, Stanley Tucci, Malcolm McDowell, Thomas Haden Church and Lisa Kudrow.

Plot:
Olive (Emma Stone) is a good student, though not a particularly popular one. But when a rumor is started that she sleeps around, it puts a quick end to her going unnoticed. Olive gets into a catfight with the religious do-gooder Marianne (Amanda Bynes), poses as a sex partner for various guys (who are gay or unpopular) and causes general mayhem at her school.

Easy A is a thoroughly enjoyable film. Though I expected a little more than it actually was, I had a good time watching and it makes for a nice evening’s entertainment.

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