Monday, July 21, 2008

It's okay, guys. I have faith in you.

Netflix is one of my favorite inventions, especially after the Video Warehouse experience noted below. There are over 200 titles in my queue (I love that word. Queue.) and I reorganize them obsessively. Every now and then, though, one slips through the cracks and I wind up standing in front of my mailbox wondering what the heck that movie is and why I wanted to see it.

So there I stood this past Friday, looking quizzically at the envelope containing
The Last Kiss. For one thing, I am not a big fan of Zach Braff. I have never remotely liked Scrubs and I don’t find him so much zany as I do annoying. But I seem to remember reading some review that said this was a bright and shining moment for new filmmakers, so realistic, so true-to-life, so I suppose that was how it landed in my mailbox and wasted two hours of my life.

Let me just give you a synopsis of this little gem of a film so that you can keep those two hours for better use. The Last Kiss tells the story of four lifelong friends (including Casey Affleck, always a bonus) facing 30 in Wisconsin. Guy #1 has a meltdown after his girlfriend leaves him and makes the decision that a road trip to Mexico will solve his depression – which is not such a big deal. Guy #2 hooks up with this um…”totally uninhibited”…chick at a wedding and discovers she is his dream girl, only to freak out at the thought of meeting her parents and join the crazy Mexican field trip. Guy #3 decides that rather than work on his marriage he will leave his wife and child and join the Mexican field trip as well – although (being Casey Affleck) he does bail on the road trip at the last minute and come back to be a father, if not a husband.

Meanwhile, Zach Braff becomes the world’s biggest idiot. He and his girlfriend (Who is Jacinda Barrett, who I have loved ever since she was on The Real World.) are expecting a baby. So as the level of responsibility grows, his mental age lowers. Find out you’re going to be a Daddy? Flirt with a cute college kid. Think about buying a house? Sneak away to meet said college student and make a date for that weekend. The drama comes to a boiling point when he gets busted by sweet Jacinda – who I might add is the perfect woman, and I’m not saying that as my opinion, I am repeating the opinion of one of the Doofus Brothers in the film. So Jacinda busts him, he gives the whole, “It didn’t mean anything…now I know how much I love you” line, she tells him to leave AND HE GOES BACK TO SLEEP WITH THE COLLEGE CHICK!!! And of course, Jacinda at last takes him back, because he slept on her porch for three days.

So this is true-to-life drama? I mean, these things happen. Cheating, divorce, idiocy. I get that. We’ve all been through it. But what this whole movie says is that men my age are stupid. I’m not saying I think men my age are stupid. I am a huge fan of men my age – maybe not Zach Braff, but most of them. But still - is this how Hollywood is defining the men of my generation?

Damn. If I was you guys I’d be pissed off.

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