Sunday, September 08, 2013

Drinking Buddies

Today I saw Drinking Buddies, starring Jake Johnson and Olivia Wilde.

Kate (Wilde) works at a brewery with Luke (Johnson). They're both in seemingly long-term relationships with Chris (Ron Livingston) and Jill (Anna Kendrick), respectively.

When a double-date camping trip leaves them wondering if they're with the right partner, Chris and Kate decide to take a break, while Luke and Jill remain together.

As with any mumblecore flick, all of the dialogue feels like improv, and the actors feel like people we know.

Johnson especially, known for his endearing character on New Girl, fits the bill as a brewmaster who lacks ambition. A reference Jill makes to their "marriage" discussion hints at his procrastination to propose; the older, wiser Chris would probably not cause such a delay.

When Jill takes a trip for work, Luke is left behind to help Kate move residences. A "will they or won't they" tension ensues, and the film turns from a lighthearted rom com to a more serious indie drama.

But that's okay, because this group is refreshingly real without being pretentious. Their struggles are familiar and their behaviors are typical, if not ideal.

Each character, though flawed, also has redeeming qualities that cause us to root for them, which makes this a good bunch to watch.

If only mumblecore had sequels.


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