For those of you who grew up in the 1980’s, or were old enough to experience that period of filmmaking, it was a great era for the movie industry. There were so many movies that made us laugh, cry and feel a myriad of other emotions. One genre really stands out during that period; comedy. Not just comedy, but female driven comedies. Goldie Hawn was the queen of comedy films in the 1980’s. Movies like Private Benjamin, Protocol and Overboard were among the many great successes of that period. Post-1980’s we saw a sharp decline as female comedies seemingly faded into the sunset. Three decades later Bridesmaids comes out swinging and drags female comedies back to the forefront of box office entertainment. Following in the wake of Bridesmaids’ success is For a Good Time, Call…, which continues to forge the path for female comedies.
The movie begins with two women who are down on their luck. Katie (Ari Graynor – Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, What’s Your Number?, The Sitter) can no longer afford to live in her apartment by herself and is forced to take on a roommate. Lauren (Lauren Miller – Superbad, Zack and Miri Make a Porno, 50/50) is dumped by her longtime boyfriend and roommate, thereby forced to find another place to stay. In comes Jesse (Justin Long – Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story, Aceppted, Live Free or Die Hard) who plays roommate matchmaker. As it turns out, these two ladies have history and not in a good way. This is a movie where the trailer simply does not do it justice; the movie is even funnier. Obviously if you are offended by raunchy material, this movie is not for you. For those who are not easily offended, keep reading.
Ari Graynor does an amazing job in this film of making the whole thing feel real and comfortable, but funny at the same time. Ari has been in a few big films, but really hasn’t struck it big by Hollywood standards. You would never know that based upon her performance in this film. Ari delivers a command performance that will make you sit up and pay attention. She knocks this one out of the park. Ari has a bright future ahead of her and this pivotal film may be the one that garners her the most attention to date. Lauren Miller is not a Hollywood A-lister either (yet), but does an incredible job in this film. She co-wrote the film with Katie Anne Naylon, who actually operated a phone sex line in college. Both Lauren and Katie felt the experience could be turned into a funny movie and they were right. All three women (Ari, Lauren and Katie) have bright futures in Hollywood and this movie is definitely a milestone for all of them.
Justin Long has been slowly making a name for himself and landing bigger and bigger roles over the years. He was cast perfectly in this film and at several points throughout the movie he steals the show. He is absolutely hilarious and apparently modeled his wardrobe and behavior after the director (Jamie Travis). Whatever the case may be, Justin Long does more than his fair share to help carry the movie; he delivers in spades. There were a couple of big cameos in the movie, such as Seth Rogan and Kevin Smith. You see some of the Seth Rogan cameo in the trailers, but the cameo is even funnier than what you would expect. Kevin Smith’s cameo was a total surprise and was really funny as well. While these two gentlemen were only in the movie for a short time they helped to elevate the film at just the right times.
Jamie Travis (Director – Patterns, The Saddest Boy in the World) is known for his darker short films and music videos. This is his first foray into a feature length film and he does an incredible job. Apparently he’s been reading scripts for years and nothing interested him until this script came his way. Jamie certainly chose an incredible script to use as his springboard into feature length films. Jamie has a set design background and moved into directing, giving him a good eye for the visual aspect of filmmaking. His attention to detail in this film is impeccable. The sets are colorful and lively, giving them a life of their own. Given the content of this film it could have been much darker or taken in a different direction. Kudos to Jamie on his directorial debut and for collaborating with everyone to deliver something fresh, original and downright hilarious.
For a Good Time, Call… is part of a growing trend of powerful women leads in comedy movies, which was kicked off in a big way by Bridesmaids. This truly is the funniest movie since Bridesmaids. All comparisons aside, this is a strong movie that is able to stand on it’s own as a hilarious, raunchy comedy. With the fashion industry there seems to be a thirty year trend of clothing coming back into style. That seems to hold true with old, popular vehicles as well. Are we seeing a resurgence of the 1980’s where women like Goldie Hawn dominated the box office? It sure would be a refreshing change over recycled and rebooted films that have seen the box office more than their fair share of times. For a Good Time, Call… is a great time; take a date or take some friends…you will not be disappointed.
If you’ve seen the movie already, please share your thoughts below. If you haven’t seen the movie, go see it…then come back and talk about it.