"Crap! I wish I hadn't seen Ricky on the sidewalk."

"You will be fine for 31 minutes. You will be dead in 32 minutes."

Sunday, April 7, 2013


Lola Versus features Greta Gerwig doing another variation on the brainy but fucked-up luminous blonde she played in Greenberg. The movie was written by Zoe Lister-Jones and Daryl Wein, who also directed.

Lola (Gerwig)is happily writing a dissertation on Mallarmé and planning her wedding to Luke (Joel Kinnaman).  Everything is perfectly swell until Lola's fiancé dumps her a few weeks before the wedding, leaving Lola to cry in the bathroom and sleep on the floor. 

Alice (Lister-Jones), her best girlfriend, administers rice chips and wisecracks and sprays "weed in a bottle" into Lola's mouth. Lola's mother (Debra Winger) administers a beat down to the groom's mother, pointing out that 40 wedding guests have already bought airline tickets to a destination wedding in Chiapas. 

Henry (Hamish Linklater), her longtime platonic friend, hangs out, drinks alcohol, and offers consolation.  It's only a matter of time before they end up sleeping together, right?

Well, it's 30 minutes before the lines blur.  Lola and Henry attend a show Alice is in. Lola asks Henry to spend the night, says "nights are really hard."  They sleep in the same bed.  Henry admits having feelings for Lola, but wants to take things slow.  Lola gets up in the middle of the night and calls Luke, says she misses him. 

Much of the rest of the film is drunken sex, self-loathing, sighing, hurt feelings, confusion, tears, quiet contemplation, slow realizations, and apologies.

I wish I could say that this was someone else's fault.  That it was Luke's fault or Henry's fault or Alice's.  But it's not.  It's me.

What feels real is that it all works out in the end for Lola.

What doesn't feel real is the final scene, where all of Lola's exes and mistreated friends show up for her birthday party. I don't think that's how it works in real life, even when there's free pizza at stake.  

People give up, they walk away, they hold grudges. 

Sometimes they never speak again.  

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