I really enjoyed Adult Beginners for about the first hour. I was
surprised at its score and reception because it was one of the more
realistic dramedies about family life and adulthood I've seen in recent
memory. The characters felt real, the chemistry was phenomenal, I cared
about what was happening, and it was nice to see Nick Kroll playing the
straight everyman for once. As great as Kroll was, he didn't quite
carry the movie as much as the supporting cast did. Rose Byrne and
Bobby Cannavale are fantastic as Kroll's sister and her husband (and
their chemistry is palpable, given they're a couple in real life), and
they play off Kroll's deadpan humor with sincerity and ease. It was
great to see Kroll's character having to redo his entire life, then
crashing his sister's place and having to adjust to this
family-centered lifestyle. It was honest and heartfelt, and there are
moments between Kroll and Cannavale (who plays the brother-in-law) that
are genuinely deep and thought provoking. I wanted more of that.
The humor is intermittent. It's not really a laugh-out-loud comedy despite what you might think with this cast. It's far more subdued and dramatic than a typical Nick Kroll vehicle, and it worked. For a while, anyway. The last 30 minutes of this movie felt like the writers tried to tie the movie up in a pretty pink bow as quickly as possible and call it a day. It was so rushed and half-hearted, leaving interesting subplots by the wayside and throwing this faux happily-ever-after ending that completely detracts from the overall tone. Everything is well-paced and subtle before then, taking you along for the ride and keeping you strapped in for every awkward situation or heartfelt moment, but the ending makes it all for nothing. It's like, "That's it? What happened to everything else I just saw?" The authenticity went out the window.
Having said that, Adult Beginners is very relatable. These feel like real people going through real life crises, and each of the main characters have depth and character flaws that you want to be explored. Some of them are, some aren't. Overall though, I enjoyed this movie for what it was, and if you don't mind a lame ending, I think it's definitely worth a watch.
Action / Comedy / Drama
Action / Comedy / Drama
A young, narcissistic entrepreneur crashes and burns on the eve of his company's big launch. With his entire life in total disarray, he leaves Manhattan to move in with his estranged pregnant sister, brother-in-law and 3-year-old nephew in the suburbs - only to become their nanny.
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July 23, 2015 at 10:51 PM