(director/writer: Sam Friedlander; cinematographer: Alicia Robbins; editor: Christine Kim; music: Jimmy Stofer; cast: Danny Pudi (Jeff Penaras), Mark Feuerstein (Dr. Cooper, MFT), Eddie Alfano (Don Small), Maiara Walsh (Taylor), Emily Chang (Sarah), Maya Stojan (Dr. Young), Brian Thomas Smith (Dr. Palmer), Andree Vermeulen (Marie), Kayla DiVenere (Kendra); Runtime: 119; MPAA Rating: NR; producers: Sam Friedlander, Rebecca G. Stone, Matt DiNicola, David C. Smith, Morgan Patterson; Gravitas Ventures; 2019)
“I guess the film’s theme is that splitting a restaurant check is not enough these days.”
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
Writer-director Sam Friedlander (“Larry Gaye: Renegade Male Flight Attendant”) helms a sassy contemporary sitcom comedy about two unsettled wacko married professional couples in their thirties. One couple consists of Jeff (Danny Pudi), who works at a dead-end sales job for millennial bosses at a startup company, while his wife Sarah (Emily Chang) is a meter-maid in her mid-30s. Their close friends are Don (Eddie Alfano), a successful gym owner, and his wife Taylor (Maiara Walsh), an aspiring ballet dancer. The couples are on a dinner date and both couples profess an interest in eventually having a baby. For Sarah it’s now before it’s biologically too late. But Jeff hesitates because of job insecurity, while Taylor feels it would put a halt to her dancing career and says no even if Don is ready to be a dad. But as the couples talk more, they impulsively decide to share raising a child as co-parents. They opt to have Don sire the baby with Sarah, and the couples will share expenses and custody of the child.
I guess the film’s theme is that splitting a restaurant check is not enough these days.
For allegedly sane and intelligent people, this sounds like a dumb idea. The self-absorbed couples are unsympathetic characters who talk a lot of rubbish. By the time things move on for real, the film is no longer redeemable. Its gags are mostly not funny and its breezy banter is inane.
The film is overlong and saddled with too many unfunny set pieces, where each character can’t make up their mind if this is all a silly farce they’re in or if things should be taken more seriously over their radical parenting plan.
The only thing I got from this cutesy wacko comedy was a few cheap laughs and a chance to think about other ways for progressive parenting than the crazy one suggested here.
REVIEWED ON 8/4/2020 GRADE: C+