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Booksmart

  • 06-05-2019 10:45pm
    #1
    Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 27,034 CMod ✭✭✭✭ johnny_ultimate




    The high school sex comedy is not one of my favourite genres, but saw this tonight and thought it was rather fantastic.

    It's the directorial debut of Olivia Wilde, and starring the extremely talented central duo of Kaitlyn Dever and Beanie Feldstein. The setup is straighforward: on the evening before their graduation, two straight-laced, academically overachieving girls decide to go partying. It's hard to escape the comparisons to Superbad, not least given Feldstein is Jonah Hill's sister. Thankfully, it's much, much better than just a gender reversed version of that.

    There's no massive surprises here, but what there is is an abundance of wit, charm and a pretty excellent script. It's crude as hell at times, but it's also an earnest and absolutely believable study of young friendship. It's progressive and diverse without being up in your face about it: one of the main characters is gay, for example, but the film deals with it in a natural, nonchalant way that is truly rare in films of this ilk. It feels quietly forward-thinking, but again doesn't at all rub that in your face.

    I laughed plenty, and the emotional beats, while largely predictable, are handled with grace and confidence. It also treats its side characters with surprising empathy - the film upends both the protagonists' expectations of their classmates, as well as our own.

    Wilde, naturally, makes her presence most known through the attention she gives her cast. But she's a savvy stylist in some respects too, with plenty of thoughtfully-staged and filmed moments dotted throughout. There's one weird stop-motion diversion in the middle that I didn't think worked at all, but outside that I had a blast.

    In the end what impresses most about this is what a shift a change in perspective can make. The basic ingredients are absolutely familiar, but they're mixed and matched in ways that are surprisingly pleasant. It's a great behind the camera debut for Olivia Wilde, an impressive breakthrough for the two leads who've impressed in smaller roles before, and just ultimately a whole heap of fun. Hopefully it'll find an appreciative audience when it goes on wider release in a couple of weeks.


Comments

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,960 Autecher


    I saw it last night and thought it was just plain boring. If you've seen any American comedy in the last 10-15 years starring Seth Rogen, Jonah Hill etc..then you've seen this. And like a lot of those movies it was just way too predictable, I could see the punchline/outcome coming from the set-up. There were a few laughs but small ones that were few and far between for me.



    That being said I was in the minority in the screening I was at because it got a lot of laughs from the audience.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,850 ✭✭✭ Stop moaning ffs


    Saw this yesterday and really enjoyed it.
    It’s almost like a remake of the best elements of good 80s teen movies but through a modern lens. It strays off for a few sequences that feel out of place, almost like a different film, but that could just be weird editorial choices.
    Well worth seeing though. When it’s funny, it’s very very funny.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,607 ✭✭✭ Slydice


    Gave it a watch. I thought it was done well.

    Had a bunch of laughs. Set pieces were good. Built up the friendship and relationships.

    Feels like it could be one of those growing up films for kids these days.

    There's a very small bit at the end of the credits that you can live without in case you missed.
    just audio of the two guys who were singing at the grad ceremony


  • Registered Users Posts: 43,449 ✭✭✭✭ Basq


    This was decent.. but don't think it was worthy of the acclaim being thrown at it.

    Eighth Grade, albeit more sweet, was a far better movie IMO.


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 27,034 CMod ✭✭✭✭ johnny_ultimate


    Basq wrote: »
    Eighth Grade, albeit more sweet, was a far better movie IMO.

    Personally I am pleased both these excellent films exist in the world simultaneously.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,130 ✭✭✭ correction


    Looked at it last night and really enjoyed it. Very funny with a lot of heart. The cast were excellent.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,187 ✭✭✭ S.M.B.


    Agree with the general consensus. I get where the buzz and acclaim is coming from. Preferred it over Eight Grade myself but there pretty different movies really.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,130 ✭✭✭ correction


    S.M.B. wrote: »
    Agree with the general consensus. I get where the buzz and acclaim is coming from. Preferred it over Eight Grade myself but there pretty different movies really.

    Yes. I find it odd that people are mentioning them together. Just because they both follow high school teenage girls? Beyond that they really aren't too similar at all.

    If I was comparing this to anything it'd probably be Superbad but they're directed extremely differently.


  • Registered Users Posts: 75,008 ✭✭✭✭ JP Liz V1


    I didn't know Beanie Feldstein was Jonah Hill's sister :o


  • Registered Users Posts: 43,449 ✭✭✭✭ Basq


    correction wrote: »
    Yes. I find it odd that people are mentioning them together. Just because they both follow high school teenage girls? Beyond that they really aren't too similar at all.
    They're both coming-of-age movies really, albeit from different slants.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 8,857 ✭✭✭ Snake Plisken


    Is this being streamed on Netflix somewhere in the World? As I've seen uploads with the Netflix logo in front of it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 43,449 ✭✭✭✭ Basq


    Is this being streamed on Netflix somewhere in the World?
    Yes, France.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,465 ✭✭✭ Jump_In_Jack


    Saw this last night, hadn't heard anything about it, so it was a nice surprise.
    Warm, quirky and despite the high school graduation trope and the inevitable warm and fuzzy plot resolutions, there were some very witty dialogues and some funny moments.
    I'd recommend it for anyone that would like a silly feel-good coming of age film, but if you don't have the patience for that genre then give it a skip.


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,250 ✭✭✭✭ branie2


    I saw it this evening, and I thought it was very funny.


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Education Moderators Posts: 26,528 CMod ✭✭✭✭ spurious


    Went this morning and enjoyed it a lot. Leads very engaging.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,500 ✭✭✭ Sabre0001


    Thought it was very enjoyable and the leads were very good. Pretty typical story beats, but found it good fun nonetheless.

    🤪



  • Registered Users Posts: 5,425 ✭✭✭ Rfrip


    Can’t remember the last time I laughed so much at the cinema. Really enjoyed it
    As others have said if your not into coming of age films it’s not for you.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,492 ✭✭✭ cdgalwegian


    It’s almost like a remake of the best elements of good 80s teen movies but through a modern lens. It strays off for a few sequences that feel out of place, almost like a different film, but that could just be weird editorial choices.
    Well worth seeing though. When it’s funny, it’s very very funny.


    I'd agree word for word here.
    Girlie 'Superbad'- sharper, funnier.





  • Registered Users Posts: 8,493 ✭✭✭ Goodshape


    Really enjoyed this.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,979 ✭✭✭ Technocentral


    Thought it was fairly entertaining and a good buddy film but not much of a comedy, audience last night in Lighthouse werent laughing too much either.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 9,607 ✭✭✭ Slydice




  • Registered Users Posts: 800 ✭✭✭ duffysfarm


    Saw it last night. One if the best films I have seen in a while


  • Registered Users Posts: 826 ✭✭✭ El Duda


    This isn't even getting a UK bluray release

    If the movie is half as good as everyone says, that's criminal.


  • Registered Users Posts: 826 ✭✭✭ El Duda


    Booksmart – 7.75/10

    Every decade has its Iconic, American teen comedies. The 80’s had the Breakfast Club/Ferris Bueller. The 90’s had American Pie/Clueless. The noughties had Mean Girls/Superbad. Booksmart is as good a contender as I have seen for the last decade. In fact, not a lot else stands out. It’s just a shame that this didn’t deliver at the box office as it thoroughly deserves success.

    The soundtrack, put together by Gorillaz’s Dan The Automator, is superb. I also loved the lead performance from Kaitlyn Dever who appears to have star quality.

    It's sharp, funny, progressive and I hope it gains traction and becomes a huge hit retrospectively. A potential, contemporary cult classic.


  • Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 27,161 Mod ✭✭✭✭ pixelburp


    It was a perfect storm of the right actors & the right script: writing for teens or children is incredibly difficult, that authenticity very rarely achieved, where you could believe in what's coming out of the kids' mouths, or how they're behaving. Not necessarily whether it's realistic, more if it feels genuine. God knows there are plenty of movies or TV show where the child cast members just sound like little adults. I'll often go to bat over Stranger Things for that same reason, the kids in it behaving and talking like kids of that age, straddling the fine line between being likeable and absolute brats. So while Booksmart's cast were all quite broad characters, they all felt authentic and magnetic. I'd agree that this might become something of a cult classic.


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