I saw Adventureland last night, and I thought it was great. Bear with me here. I was expecting it to be another teenage comedy about awkwardness, drugs, and girls in the vein of Superbad, and it was to an extent, but it was more than that too. To begin with, it wasn’t about high schoolers, or kids right out of high school, like most of those movies. Instead it was about kids in or just out of college, kids who could legally drink (and did, frequently). But the primary characters weren’t the typical stoner kids without a plan that tend to dominate movies about that age group. The main character had been accepted to Columbia, and was trying to make enough money to actually be able to attend. One of the other characters was majoring in Russian lit and Slavic languages. That made it a lot more relatable, at least for me, because the characters weren’t caricatures or extremes, they were smart, motivated kids with some problems.
The other thing that I thought made the movie good was that there was no “bad guy.” In real life there’s seldom a bad guy the way there is in most movies, it’s the situations and the coincidences that make life difficult. That really came through in Adventureland. Even Ryan Reynolds’ character (who despite being married, sleeps with the much younger love interest for most of the movie) isn’t a bad guy. He’s just a guy with problems. He’s nice to her, friends with the main character – it’s just the combination of events that makes for conflict.
I don’t usually like when people review movies, because we all have different opinions and preferences, and odds are you’ll disagree with me anyway. But what struck me about Adventureland wasn’t how funny it was, or how cool it was – it was how genuine it was. Plus it has a great soundtrack.
The Velvet Underground – Pale Blue Eyes