Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Movie review: "Drinking Buddies"

There's so much drinking in "Drinking Buddies" that it looks like either a beer commercial or a public service announcement from Alcoholics Anonymous. Every scene is so soaked in hops- or grape-based beverages that you probably shouldn't drive immediately afterwards.

Surprisingly, "Drinking Buddies" isn't actually about alcoholism or drunk driving, but about something much scarier: relationships.
Olivia Wilde and Jake Johnson in "Drinking Buddies"

"Drinking Buddies" revolves around Kate (Olivia Wilde) and Luke (Jake Johnson), who work together at a small Chicago brewery, and have a plutonic but oh-so-close-to-sexual relationship. 

Writer and director Joe Swanberg has put together a script that captures the non-linear nature of real relationships. The interactions between Kate and Luke and their friends zig and zag in fits and starts. There's humor, meanness and tenderness at various turns.

Good acting from Wilde, Johnson, Anna Kendrick and Ron Livingston help make it feel genuine.

Still, let's face it, a lot of us don't go to the movies to see real life. If you like escapism in your movies, "Drinking Buddies" is not for you. A warning: If you watch this movie with your significant other, you can count on have some "deep and meanngful" conversations afterward.  You might need a drink.

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