MUMBLESPUNK REVIEW | Your Sister’s Sister
Your Sister’s Sister is the second ‘mumblecore’ movie to hit multiplexes this year (the first being Jeff, Who Lives At Home) and it is arguably a better adaptation of the genre to the big screen. Here we have Jack (Duplass) who is out of sorts emotionally going to spend a weekend at his best friend Iris’s (Blunt) family lake-house, only to find her sister, Hannah (DeWitt), already there when he arrives. They end up sleeping together only for Iris to arrive the next day and declare her love for Jeff to Hannah and the whole thing spirals from there. The film deals with these difficult situations with an honest, humorous and realistic approach that will keep fans of the genre happy. Where the production values and ability of actors may have improved on traditional mumblecore flicks, the subject and the way that it is expressed in the film plays just as true as those that have come before it. The four prominent forces behind the film (the three leads and Shelton herself) all deserve a great deal of credit in this as, even when there are a few moments that play more like a traditional indie romance film, the dialogue is delivered in a fashion that you may have seen someone speak to you before.
It is strange to praise a film-maker for purely capturing reality and actors for realistically embodying every day people and how they react, but that is exactly what I am doing and this film definitely deserves that praise.
Your Verdict: Movie
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29 June 2012
Beautifully dark, twisted and funny, this is one of those films that will be on end of years lists purely because critics won’t be able to forget it. Read our full review here.
Friends With Kids
‘The Funnest Film Since Bridesmaids’ says a quote in the trailer. So the funniest film in the last 371 days then?
This is a strange beast as it was made prior to Bridesmaids and yet will inevitably live in it’s shadow. It’s stars are Adam Scott who is best known for programmes that are awesome (Parks and Recreation, Party Down) but have never made it to the UK, and Jennifer Westfeldt who wrote and directed this also and yet is probably less well known for her roles in several TV shows and Jessica Stein in Kissing Jessica Stein, and more known for being Jon Hamm’s lady. This has led TV adverts to not even list their names in the UK and instead focus on the excellent cast of Bridesmaids/support cast here (Hamm, Wiig, Rudolph and O’Dowd) to sell the movie. If it’s a third as funny as Bridesmaids it’s probably worth a date movie.
It’s Belgian. It’s whimsical and twee. It is the story of a real life, fully grown female who possesses fairy-like abilities and grants a hotelier three wishes before vanishing after only granting two of them and leaving the hotelier having fallen in love and desperate to find her. It looks lovely and reviews have been strong but sadly it is showing almost nowhere.
Noel Clarke’s name attached to any kind of British property drains my enthusiasm for it. He certainly seems to be the selling point in the trailer, well him and the hot lass from The Inbetweeners Movie. It seems like a very similar premise to Attack The Block but replacing the block with a storage facility and the charming kids with a bunch of nonsense adults. So basically, it’s Alien in England but instead of being Ridley Scott we get Johannes Roberts who’s last four films have an average IMDB score of 3.25.
Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton battle it out and then inevitably become allies in an attempt to take their church to a Glee concert and win. If you make it through the trailer and want to see it then you’ll inevitably like it. Otherwise, it might be funny for the wrong reasons I guess?
Todd Solondz is back and, from this trailer, he seems to have lightened up a bit. Here we get a likable but unattractive dude failing to accept defeat in attempting to date Selma Blair. This looks funny in the same way that maybe Young Adult was funny earlier this year in dealing with a delusional character but, like The Fairy, you’ll be very lucky to find a theatre carrying it.
Your Sister’s Sister
The second mumblecore movie to hit the multiplexes this year (Jeff Lives At Home being the first) this movie has Mark Duplass (co-writer and director of Jeff… and one of the hardest working guys in Hollywood seemingly) heading to Emily Blunt’s lake house, where he fucks her sister and then, when Emily Blunt, his lifelong friend, turns up the next day seemingly wanting to be with him, he finds himself in a pickle. This might be a hefty foot into the mainstream but the story is still very simple and realistic so mumblecore fans should remain happy whilst also introducing the basic notions of the movement to a wider audience.
My Pick: Killer Joe (but Your Sister’s Sister would be my pick any other week of the year)
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REVIEW | The Five Year Engagement
The Five-Year Engagement is a typical Apatow comedy and it made me laugh. It didn’t make me laugh loads but I chuckled a fair few times and I was in hysterics once. This is not too bad. The Five-Year Engagement is also a drama and it moved me. It didn’t move me loads but I had some genuine concern for our leads and it made me ask questions of them and myself. The fact that it is both of these things is its first problem and the problem from which all future problems stem. Of course dramas can be funny and comedies can be moving, but here the crass humour does not sit well with the somewhat sweet story of life testing love. We get Chris Pratt being Seth Rogen and doing it well, but a Rogen-character is as welcome in this film as he would be in The Notebook. We get two additional male characters for Segel to interact with who are both boring as fuck, and, due to the level of drama created, it ends with the comedy elements lacking conviction.
Instead, this is a comedy that should have made Blunt’s character the lead, ditched the crude, laddy jokes, and accepted that this is a more traditional rom-com. With The Five Year Engagement we have the first Apatow movie written for a predominantly female audience, it’s just a shame that the makers are not aware of it.
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22nd June 2012
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
At first I was excited for this film as for anything quite so mind-numbingly stupid to get made (ignoring the obvious marketing dream that this is) must surely mean that it is fantastic. But then I started worrying as, while killing vampires with a giant ax is awesome, the idea of politics being discussed in a movie of this sort is less enticing. The reviews for it seem to back this theory up sadly.
The Five Year Engagement
From the guys who brought us The Muppets comes another Apatow-produced comedy, this time about a prolonged engagement. That’s it, it’s not unplanned pregnancy (Knocked Up), potentially terminal cancer (Funny People), or forty years of virginity (ahem, 40 Year Old Virgin), it’s merely an engagement that extends beyond their initial intentions. I love Segel and Blunt is mighty fine but the trailer has far too many punchlines involving people falling down for my liking.
Lay The Favourite
Rebecca Hall is hot but not in an ex-hooker kind of way. Bruce Willis seems to bring nothing to his role. Catherine Zeta Jones is one of my most hated people in existence and I have no reason for it. Vince Vaughn is apparently in this. I am really only hoping that, like every Dawson’s Creek episode ever, Pacey saves the day and manages to distract me from how ridiculous Rebecca Hall’s voice is in this. It sounds like she’s doing dumb American mixed with Heath Ledger’s Joker.
Written by the guy who gave the world Paranormal Activity, this one sees a group of friends travelling throughout Europe go on an ‘extreme trip’ to Chernobyl. There they find that they are not alone. Reviews aren’t good currently.
My Pick: If you must, The Five Year Engagement
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I Will Watch Anything With The Muppets In It
The internet has gone a little crazy for this and yet, despite being a massive fan of The Muppets and this year’s movie, I’m not exactly sure why. Bloopers in general are pretty mediocre unless on a comedy but I still chuckled a bunch and what the fuck else are you going to do on your Bank Holiday Monday.