Friends don’t let friends settle down with the wrong person. At least that is the hope.
In the 2001 film Saving Silverman, Darren (Jason Biggs) is engaged to Judith (Amanda Peet). Judith is controlling, mean-spirited and spiteful. Darren’s friends Wayne (Steve Zahn) and J.D. (Jack Black) have a plan to convince Darren to break up the engagement. This plan includes kidnapping Judith and reuniting Darren with Sandy (Amanda Detmer), his high school ex-girlfriend who is soon to become a nun. The question is, will the plan work?
Back in the early 2000’s, some in Hollywood though that the dumb buddy comedy genre would lead to success. Saving Silverman is one of those films. It tries to be funny, but it’s not. It also relies too heavily on stereotypes, especially the major female characters.
Do I recommend it? Not really.
Life immediately after college is often very confusing. The expectation is to get a job, eventually settle down, maybe a have a kid or two and lead a generally quiet life But what happens when this expectation does not meet reality?
In the 1994 film, Reality Bites , Lelaina (Winona Ryder) creates a mockumentary of her post college experience. Her best friend, Troy (Ethan Hawke) is a musician who has lost several minimum wage jobs. Her other friends, Vickie (Janeane Garofalo) and Sammy (Steve Zahn) are grappling with their own issues. Vickie is anticipating the results of an AIDS test while Sammy is in the closet. Then, along comes Michael (Ben Stiller), who offers Lelaina a career making opportunity. Now she must choose not only the life she wants, but the man she wants in her life.
I have two thoughts on this movie. The first is that the feelings and experiences of the characters feel very universal. Those of us who do complete college most often come out of it with a question what to do with our lives. Without the structure we have had for the last two decades, our life feels incomplete. But on the other hand, this movie is very Gen-X specific and it does feel a little dated.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
When we are teenagers, we think that we have the world at our feet. We think we know everything that we need to know, that our dreams will come true.
Then we grow up.
In the 2001 film, Riding In Cars With Boys, Beverly (Drew Barrymore) is a 15-year-old girl in 1965. Her one goal in life is to be a writer. Then she meets Ray (Steve Zahn), one thing leads to another and Beverly finds herself pregnant well before she graduates high school. Ray and Beverly try to make a go of it for their son, but Prince Charming or father of the year, Ray is not. It will be up to Beverly to not only raise her son, but to achieve the goals she had before she became pregnant.
The thing that I like about this film is how realistic it is. Beverly starts out as an idealistic teenager, but quickly learns that she must grow up for her son’s sake. Parenthood is never easy, but it is much harder when you are still growing up yourself.
I recommend it.