Film #231: Young Adult (2011)

youngadultdirector: Jason Reitman
language: English
length: 94 minutes
watched on: 3 October 2016

This was another movie that we went into essentially blind. Charlize Theron, in a far cry from Mad Max, plays a down-on-her-luck ghost-writer in Minnesota. She returns to her small hometown to try and win back her high-school crush, who’s just had a baby with his wife.

First off, I didn’t believe the premise. Theron’s alcoholism and depression are believable and played well, but I didn’t believe that she would be honestly pining over the old flame in such a way – he was pretty bland.

Secondly, I didn’t really believe in her relationship with the other guy, that developed in a predictable and inevitable way over the course of the movie. I also saw it as wish fulfillment on the part of the creators and the actor, since she’s way more attractive than him.

At the same time, it wasn’t a complete waste of time, as there are some blackly comic scenes in there, and Theron’s character does get the kick up the bum that she needs to get back on the horse of her life, and I thought she made a very good performance in general.

The title’s pretty transparent, though. She’s a young adult writer, right, and get this!!! she’s got some growing up to do! I bet the writers were having orgasms over the double meaning there. Stop!

Anyone else seen this? What did you think?

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