April 14, 2009

Movie Review: Adventureland

While I would love to use ‘Adventureland’ as a study of movies about summer and the inherent romanticism in said plots (Romantic as in whimsical and daydream-inducing and lovely and lush and green, not romantic as in pink/hearts/love. Though, let's be honest - I married my summer camp sweetheart so there'd probably be a bit of that too.), I just can't, because in 2 months, I'll have forgotten I saw this movie and where would that leave my argument?

Don't get me wrong. I liked the movie. It had an awesome soundtrack, a truly hilarious supporting cast (Bill Hader, Kristin Wiig and Martin Starr), and some really good one-liners (“I'm amazed at how tiny my paycheck is.”), but I left the theater feeling lukewarm. It boils down to this: I laughed, but I didn't cry. And a movie that ends with the promise of happily ever after that doesn’t make me at least tear up? Well, they did something wrong.

I partially blame Ryan Reynolds, who just didn’t fit his character at all. We're supposed to kind of hate him, while understanding his appeal (You know the one: The guys want to be him and the girls want to sleep with him), but I felt like he was just playing Ryan Reynolds. He really didn't fit the 80s slick/slacker mold. Which brings me to my final critique: As far as I can tell, there was no real reason for the movie to be set in the 80s. Any ideas?

All that said, I really did like the movie. But I think I liked that Ed Burns/Dustin Hoffman movie too. I just can’t be bothered to remember it anymore. In any case, I will grade it based on my feelings right now.

7 Twix bars!