Wednesday, 16 January 2013

'Seeking a Friend for the end of the world' Film Review

With all the end of the world craze of last year, 'Seeking a Friend' is a welcome comedy, starring one of my favourite actresses Keira Knightley and Steve Carell... what could go wrong?

Dodge (Steve Carell) is a middle-aged man who, upon hearing the world will end, continues his everyday routine. Even as his wife leaves him, he goes to work, eats microwaved food and so on. But his meaningless last days change when he meets his neighbour Penny (Keira Knightley), a young and quirky girl who inspires him to find his high school sweetheart before the world ends. 

The two go on an adventure to rekindle Dodge's long lost love and to reunite Penny with her family. On the way, they meet some strange people and find themselves in outrageous predicaments, but will they make it in time?

The film was somewhat slow to start but highlighted the monotony of Dodge's life. It was thankfully picked up when the pair meet and from then on, sped away. It was quite amusing to see the reactions to the 'end of the world' reflect upon how people acted in December- the parties, the riots... and really people's response to their last days...

Which is essentially what I feel this film was trying to do. Instead of making another disaster movie where people are trying to escape said disaster, it is more of a meaningful message: If you know you are going to die, how will you spend your last days? Is it alone? With family? With your lover?

Hidden in the midst of uneccessarily drugs, sex and alcohol, this message peeps out every now and then, asking us to question what is most important to us and to cherish it before it is too late. Unfortunately, the movie feels forced in some way, whether it is the unlikely pair's lack of real chemistry or just what happens to them, but it takes away from the overall effect of the movie.

As the film reaches its climax, it kind of takes a drastic turn and ends in a really typical way which I did not want or like. There are some sweet moments at the end, but... I would've liked to see it done differently.

Keira Knightley- Penny
Steve Carell- Dodge

Also stars Adam Brody, Nashville's Connie Britton and Desperate Housewives' Mark Moses.

Even as a Knightley fan, I struggled to really like her in this role. The young British actress may be flawless in a period drama, but when she needs to act in the present day as a normal female, it seems to strike her as a tad difficult. There is a cute awkwardness she puts into the role but feels overacted, whereas Carell was fluid, genuine and believable.

The chemistry between the two were awkward and forced. Yes they can be friends- I can totally see that- but when romantic love is hinted and thrown in, I was like NOOOOOOOOOO... that part did NOT work.

'Seeking a Friend for the end of the world' had the potential to be a great heartwarming family movie but tried too hard to be funny and modern that it failed to successfully bring the message of cherishing and love. The awkward chemistry between the leads made this uneasy to watch and despite some likeable sweet scenes, did not manage to detract from the ultimate unlikelihood of the pair.

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