RATED | R
OPENS | 6.15.12
I watched Sex and the City in college. I saw He’s Just Not That Into You, How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days and 27 Dresses and laughed at jokes I identified with, because I’m a twenty-something who’s been there in whatever hilarious or tear-jerking moment Katherine Heigl happened to be starring in, and I’ve worn a bad bridesmaid dress or two. I’ve rolled my eyes at Girls, claiming that my life isn’t exemplified by the behavior of Hannah and crew, even though the HPV scares and dude problems reflect what kind of summer (or year) I had after I graduated from a dirty hippy liberal arts school just outside of New York City. I, Hilary Hughes, am not immune to the millennial chick flick.
That being said: I am sick to fucking death of these movies that take women, turn them into sniveling, whiny, helpless wusses incapable of taking control of their own lives (or holding their liquor) because a man doesn’t love them that then present us with some backslap-happy road to discovery that results in some girl with perfect beach waves realizing that she just needs to like, be one with herself right now after a couple of Vinyasa classes.
And for that reason, I despised absolutely everything about Lola Versus.
Lola (Greta Gerwig), living in a perfect downtown Manhattan loft with her perfect, poetry-tattooed artist boyfriend, is perfectly thrilled when her perfect boyfriend, Luke (Joel Kinnaman), proposes to her with the perfect non-conventional non-diamond engagement ring. Things turn to the opposite of perfect when Luke freaks out over the planning for their destination wedding, and Lola runs to her crunchy restaurateur parents (Bill Pullman and Debra Winger) when he breaks things off. Zany, manufactured quirky best friend (Zoe Lister Jones) makes a bunch of awkward vagina jokes and other best friend Henry (Hamish Linklater) proves to fit the “guy friend you shouldn’t sleep with but do because he’s in a band and you’re on the rebound”-mold to a T.
The movie ends as predictably as it begins, with Luke attending Lola’s birthday party in a park by the Brooklyn Bridge (fucking kill me) and Lola, glowing from the zen due to all that yoga and cleansing she’s been doing, gets the immense satisfaction of telling Luke that she can’t see anyone else because she’s seeing herself right now.
Explain to me how this movie is ANY DIFFERENT FROM ANY OTHER ROMANTIC COMEDY MADE IN MANHATTAN ABOUT A WOMAN IN HER LATE TWENTIES.
I went in with high hopes. The creative team behind Lola Versus is the one that brought 500 Days Of Summer—that adorable hipster love story featuring the unhateable duo of Joseph Gordon-Leavitt and Zooey Deschanel—to life, and it features a cast of young relatively unknowns (Kinnaman, Lister-Jones, Linklater) that were drawn from a slew of pseudo-likeable TV endeavors (The Killing, Whitney, The Big C). For all intents and purposes, this romantic comedy should’ve been at the very least palatable like a slew of low-budget independent flicks ruminating on lost love in our twenties before it.
Instead, we get painful dialogue, DOA jokes and acting that’s subpar at best.
For the sake of your sanity and your cat lady tendencies, avoid Lola like the plague.