Monday, January 11, 2010

Movie Review: Youth in Revolt

When it comes to the youth having awkwardness and angst, Michael Cera is the goto guy when you want to make your film. If he's not available, then you goto Jessie Eisenberg. For Youth in Revolt, this might have been a case where Jessie would have been a better selection.

Nick Twisp (Cera) is caught in a bad situation. He hates his name. His parents are divorced. His mom (Jean Smart) is hooked up with a looser truck driver Jerry (Zack Galifianakis). His dad (Steve Buschemi) is hanging with a trophy girlfriend (Ari Graynor). After Jerry does a bad transaction with some sailors, Nick, his mom and Jerry have to high tail it to a trailer park to avoid a confrontation with the sailors. It's here at the trailer park that Nick meets Sheeni (Portia Doubleday) who lives in a two story trailer and falls head over heals for a girl who lives with ultra conservative parents. Boy finds girl.

As typically portrayed, when the reins are held too tight, the youth rebels. In this case, it's not Nick. It's Sheeni. But she wants a bad boy and Nick is not all that and a bag of chips. She speaks her mind and knows what she wants as she's already seeing someone. She likes Nick but plays with him. She wants more of a bad boy she plays Nick against her current boy friend Trent. Nick and Sheeni are separated. In order to get the girl he takes on a second persona, Francios Dillinger. Boy looses girl, boy attempts to regain girl.

The rest of the movie is spent showing the events, plans and schemings that Nick will go through in order to get the girl back. I sat there watching the screen as Nick was having conversations with Francios. I was confused as to why he wasn't under psychiatric supervision and medications. The conversations at times were funny, often sad. Cera seems to make a living playing the guy in the awkward sexual situations like Juno or Superbad. Some of the situations were so over the top they were funny. Some just plain sad.

Most of the talent in this movie wasn't used very well. Galifianakis didn't get to do much. He was so funny in The Hangover, but here he didn't get to be funny. Ray Liotta came in playing his usual tough guy although I felt I saw this character before from Wild Hogs. Fred Willard and Justin Long has small roles as well.

Does the boy get the girl because ultimately isn't that what all romantic comedies are about? We'll you'll need to watch the film. Paying for a matinee would seem a little extravagant for this movie. I might suggest it on a rental. The movie runs 90 minutes and has an R rating for sexual content, language, and drug use.