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Bradford Richardson

Billy, Brilliant and Wonderful, as always! Now, I'm rushing to watch CATASTROPHE now!

Billie Bates

I saw this last night, thoroughly enjoyed it, even if the onscreen chemistry was a little lacking between the leads.. But I left wondering why it didn't feel as fresh as I thought it would. Then I remembered the Toni Colette Indy from 2013, Lucky Them. It explores healthy nostalgia vs being stuck in the past. But she was also a Trainwreck and a writer whose assignment sends her on the journey that will help her arc...
Anyway, I was wondering if you saw Lucky Them and if you consider it a rom com? Or atleast a romantic dramedy, if that's a thing.

mernitman

Hi Billie! No, I haven't seen Lucy Them, and now you've piqued my curiosity. I'll check it out!

Billie Bates

Please do! I'd love to hear what you think. There were some misses with it, but over all it really stayed with me. Maybe I'm just a sucker for Aussie actresses and rock and roll ;)

Cheyenne Dhraga

OK, there must be something wrong with me. I was really looking forward to "Trainwreck." I love Amy Schumer as a stand-up, I love rom-coms; I really wanted this movie to be good. But, I was pretty disappointed.

I couldn't believe when I got home and saw the Rotten Tomatoes scores of 85%/80%. Did I see some other "Trainwreck"?

Don't get me wrong--the movie does have some strong points. There were a few very funny scenes. The acting across the board was excellent. Tilda Swinton killed it (and the second movie in a row I've seen her in where I didn't even recognize her (also "Snowpiercer")).

But, I have to say there were too many times where scenes just dragged. Long stretches of people just rambling on about stuff. Long periods of silence from the audience. I wasn't going to say this, because I didn't want to be too mean, but at one point I decided that "Trainwreck" is Judd Apatow's "Interiors."

All I could think of was that a script like this by an unknown writer would never get made without a serious rewrite.

Maybe I'm missing something, but there seem to be a few characters in the film that are there for comic relief only and have little to do with the plot. The Vanessa Bayer character (she's great, by the way), the Dave Attell character, and the step-nephew--all of them could be cut from the script and it would still be the same story, only even less funny. If you need characters purely for comic relief in a comedy, isn't that a bad sign?

As someone who's trying to learn to write cohesive, organic stories where everything is connected and works together to service one theme, where there is a lot of tension and no wasted dialog, where characters have goals in every scene which meet with conflict, and every scene moves the plot forward and/or develops character, I found few lessons here. Or, maybe I did.

But, kudos to whoever decided that, while it's sometimes better when a character says nothing, it's even funnier when she slightly puffs up her mouth like she's going to say "But..." and still says nothing. That was the funniest thing in the movie. Oh, SPOILER ALERT!

BTW, are we ever going to pass a law that you can't use dialog in a trailer that is not actually in the movie?


mernitman

Cheyenne, I don't think there's anything wrong with you. Comedy is notoriously subjective. And I'm with you on a couple of your points - 100% re: the intermittent flatness of the direction (referred to in my post, e.g. "Apatow is still prone to moments of inexplicably dead air"). And that trailer issue really bugs me, too - especially since a few of the gags that were cut from the finished movie were good gags.

But I didn't have your problem with the supports. These felt like legit supporting roles to me, albeit pro forma, each with a function and a personality - not brilliant, mind you, but there was utility in the more substantive roles, and such characters are supposed to be funny in a comedy, so... mission accomplished, from my POV.

Re: the larger "expectations vs. delivery" issue (and it's always tough to see a movie when it's been hyped before you see it), I'd say that Apatow, with first-timer Schumer or without, doesn't really do the ideal movie you're describing; he's mostly interested in the behavior of left-of-center (freak & geek-ish) characters and tends to just hang out with them, on-screen (hence the bloated overlong nature of even his best pics). This is both a strength and weakness, where today's audience is concerned; I'd argue that his core fans intuitively respond to what feels less crafty and "Hollywood," while the mainstream at large, only now happily embracing Schumer, simply enjoys her humor and relatability.

That nonverbal "But..." response of hers is, by the way, a function, not a bug: she does this on her TV show consistently, and I, too feel both ways about it, as it sometimes merely seems an avoidance of what could/should be a more killer comeback.

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