Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Swiped (2018)

Movie Name/Year: Swiped (2018)
Genre: Comedy
Length: 93 minutes
Rating: TV-14
Production/Distribution: Liberty Productions dba Night Dove Pictures, Netflix,
Director: Ann Deborah Fishman
Writer: Ann Deborah Fishman
Actors: Kristen Johnston, Noah Centineo, George Hamilton, Leigh-Allyn Baker, Kendall Ryan Sanders, Shein Mompremier, Nathan Gamble, Maddy Curley, Alana Stewart, Kalani Hilliker, Christian Hutcherson, Shelby Wulfert

Blurb from IMDb: James, a college freshman and computer genius, is enlisted by his womanizing roommate, Lance, to code the ultimate hook-up app. But when James discovers that his divorced mother is using the app, unexpected consequences ensue.


Cat’s Point of View:
Good grief.

Sorry, Netflix. You can’t hit a home-run with all of your ‘originals,’ I guess.
Is it bad that the actual thought crossed my mind that I’d seen late-night skin-max softcore nonsense with better production quality than this movie? If the hook-up scenes that were implied actually manifested into the film, it would fit right in with that genre. Alas, comedy was a misnomer for Swiped’s genre.

To be fair, I get it that this was supposed to be a social satire with a meaningful message. Some moments were ok and the concept, in general, wasn’t entirely without merit. Those points, alone, were the driving force behind my rating. Otherwise, it would have been much lower.

This is really frustrating for me. I don’t like tearing things down, and I try very hard to look for positive aspects of a movie. Swiped just didn’t give me much to work with.

Sadly, if you watch the trailer, there isn’t much point spending over 90 minutes watching the whole film. You get all of the high points, but with less eye-rolling moments in between. 

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 20%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 60%
Metascore – None
Metacritic User Score – None
IMDB Score – 3.3/10
CinemaScore – None

Trust the Dice Parental Advisory Rating: PG-13

Trust the Dice: Cat’s Rating – 1.5/5

Movie Trailer:

Monday, August 5, 2019

She’s Out of My League (2010)

Movie Name/Year: She’s Out of My League (2010)
Genre: Comedy, Romance
Length: 104 minutes
Rating: R
Production/Distribution: DreamWorks, Mosaic, Paramount Pictures, United International Pictures (UIP), Universal Pictures International (UPI), Zon Lusomundo Audiovisuais, Argentina Video Home, Film1, Kadokawa Pictures, Odeon, Paramount Home Entertainment, Veronica, Warner Home Video
Director: Jim Field Smith
Writer: Sean Anders, John Morris
Actors: Jay Baruchel, Alice Eve, Mike Vogel, Nate Torrence, Lindsay Sloane, Kyle Bornheimer, Jessica St. Clair, Krysten Ritter, Debra Jo Rupp, Adam LeFevre, Kim Shaw, Jasika Nicole, Geoff Stults, Hayes MacArthur, Andrew Daly, Sharon Maughan, Trevor Eve, Adam Tomei, Robin Shorr, Yan Xi, Evan Alex Cole

Blurb from IMDb: An average Joe meets the perfect woman, but his lack of confidence and the influence of his friends and family begin to pick away at the relationship.


Selina’s Point of View:
I was pleasantly surprised by She’s Out of My League.

Initially, my only real interest in seeing it came from Jay Baruchel’s (How to Train Your Dragon, This is the End, The Trotsky) involvement. He’s one of those actors that I would follow anywhere. He does tend to get typecast as the awkward friend or the odds-against geek. That means it’s not all that difficult to figure out what a movie he’s in is going to be like. It’s going to be a little bit cringey, but light-hearted with an uplifting tone. In the end, he beats the odds – with very few exceptions. I know he’s worth much more as an actor than he sometimes gets credit for, but this is the current reality.

The prediction was accurate. She’s Out of My League when looked at from a more general perspective, isn’t going to get many points for originality. It’s when you really focus in on the individual parts that you see where this film was different.

Most romantic comedies have the same basic character motivations. In the beginning of this one, it looks like things are going to go the same way. Hot girl picks the geeky guy because he’s ‘safe’ and she doesn’t want to get hurt. Awkward guy is flabbergasted by her interest and feels he can’t measure up. The motivations are even bolstered by the main female’s ‘attractive ex’ trope and the male lead’s ‘not interested until another girl is interested’ ex. The thing is, none of that really matters as you get deeper into the film.

Generally, you’ll see a lot of lying – or characters being advised to lie – throughout this kind of rom-com. Not here. All the characters were almost uncomfortably honest with each other. That’s a huge change of pace that critics didn’t seem to acknowledge. Whenever an ex came on screen, the main characters were honest about the relationships. I kept expecting the story to trot down one of those familiar roads – but it never did.

Then, in stories where one of the characters was cheated on, causing them to look for someone ‘safe’ there’s some kind of cheating plot that happens later on. Even if it’s just perceived. I kept waiting for that.

Didn’t happen.

Finally, when a main character has a self-esteem problem, you tend to see the characters around them all being supportive (except maybe one or two) and trying to talk them out of it. The issue seems to have no cause. Not here.

She’s Out of My League doesn’t make you guess why Baruchel’s character feels the way he does; it lays it out for you. It doesn’t just end off with ‘romantic love fixes everything’ either. Instead, it shows the audience how important it is to surround oneself with supportive people. People who will lift you up instead of telling you what you can’t do.

If you ask me, She’s Out of My League is severely underrated.

Although there were some very typical ingredients, the writing was good. There were even some lines that stuck with me and are still making me giggle. There was a lot of awkward ‘cringe’ factor, but the movie had plenty of other humor to balance it out.

There was also a very talented cast involved. Aside from Baruchel there were plenty of incredible actors; Alice Eve (Iron Fist, Bees Make Honey, Before We Go), Krysten Ritter (Jessica Jones, Don’t Trust the Bitch in Apartment 23, Gilmore Girls), and Debra Jo Rupp (That ‘70s Show, Better With You, Lucky 13), among others.

I think a lot of critics took She’s Out of My League and failed to look past the surface. It’s a shame, because it’s a much better film that it’s been given credit for. I’m glad I got the chance to see it.

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 58%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 59%
Metascore – 46/100
Metacritic User Score – 6.6/10
IMDB Score – 6.4/10
CinemaScore – B

Trust the Dice: Selina’s Rating4/5

Movie Trailer: