Monday, 17 September 2012

16/08/2012: Wanderlust [2012]

A Paul Rudd and Jennifer Aniston romantic comedy. Honestly, I don't think there are any two names you could put to headline a rom-com that I would be like "This is gonna be awesome".  But it was set in a commune full of weird modern day hippies and that meant it could be possibly decent, or at least funny so I took the chance.

I can't say that Wanderlust was an enriching cinematic experience or that it brought anything new to the standard formula of these movies. You could predict almost everything that was going to happen and in a genre that has seen every twist and turn already taken countless times before it, I didn't expect anything else. But Paul Rudd was decent, as well as a few other of the supporting cast members. There were a couple of other surprises as well, but in the end, everything ended up right where I expected.

Rudd and Aniston are a couple living in Manhattan and looking to move forward in life by buying a house. Rudd holds some mediocre shitty office job and apparently Aniston has done everything not under the sun. I think that the opening section of this movie is probably the funniest, with the purchasing of the new apartment, Rudd getting hit by a taxi, and Aniston's pitch to HBO. I really hope HBO has seen it, it is pretty bang on. (Love you guys though). Eitherway, the predictable happens and when life is going good everything turns to shit right at the same moment. Now with no home and no jobs, the couple set out on the road to have a typical life changing encounter.

You can get larger rental storage spaces.
Now, everyone knows by the trailer that they wind up at a commune, and that the majority of the jokes are going to come from making fun of the peace loving (word that starts with an i) community. Then they will learn to accept them, move in, break up, get back together, and move back to normalcy. For those of you expecting anything else, I'm sorry that is what you get, but seeing as that has worked for years, it isn't a total disaster just formulaic.

Now, the big thing that surprised me is that I had no idea that Wanderlust was an R rated movie when I started. So when we got to the commune and met our first member, pun intend, who appeared to be a nudist I was like "and now we get to see ridiculous cuts and angles the rest of the movie just to avoid seeing this naked man." Then surprise, turns out Wanderlust went full out and completely bare and got itself an R rating, which it then doesn't really use again. Except, at the very end, when we get a bunch of naked old people. The music says epic stampede, my eyes say tear me out. I did have some hope for Malin Akerman,who isn't shy, but no dice. Apparently however, a lot of people were somehow mislead to believe that Jennifer Aniston was going to have a topless seen. Well, she does, but you don't see anything. For those of you still hoping after 20 years she will do one, stay strong or whatever.

Never leave home without packing your goat.
The entirety of the movie however, feels like Paul Rudd trying to make up for everyone else' terrible acting. There are some other decent performances, but there is also a lot of bad over acting and just genuinely bad characters that aren't funny. The worst is Ken Marino as Rick, and while your character might have been written that way, you didn't have to actually act that over the top. There is also an appearance by Mad T.V.'s Jordan Peele and Keegan Michael Key although they don't appear together. While the latter's small role was better, Peele wasn't bad, if playing half of a token interracial couple.

Which does remind me, that Wanderlust does have some funny moments adapting the typical stereotypical hippie commune story to the modern day in the simple fact it doesn't bother. It just kinda acknowledges how out of place that might be and makes fun of it. The jokes in this movie cover all of the bases, from hippies to drugs and sex to micro-lofts. However just running all the bases doesn't guarantee a home run. Or does it?

Take that vegetarians!
It doesn't. Overall, Wanderlust is a decent, if played out, romantic comedy that continues to poke a dead hippie with a mostly metaphorical stick. My favourite character was Joe Lo Truglio's Wayne the winemaking nudist, but the best performance was definitely Paul Rudd. If the only thing you watch is comedies, I'd recommend it, but that is just because you've probably seen everything else.

Wanderlust IMDb


  1. Awesome review. May check this out soon.

    1. It's fine if you've got nothing better to watch, or if you just feel like a rom-com, although I'd recommend The Five-Year Engagement in that case.(review up tomorrow)

      Thanks for commenting.