"A Simple Favor"

One day, I will learn not to judge a film by its trailer. This is the third film this year where I said I would not see it. However, when my mother, one of my favorite film critics, said this film was good, I carried my jetlagged body to the movie.

Blake Lively is outstanding. It’s easy to see that she is playing a version of Serena van der Woodsen, yet her charm, sex appeal and manipulation is different in the character Emily. Anna Kendrick is her signature bubbly self as Stephanie who washes her naïveté as the film progresses. Henry Golding is dashing and wonderful as Sean, Emily’s husband. Bashir Salahuddin played a detective who gets under the skin of Stephanie and Sean in the pursuit of justice. Ian Ho plays Nicky, Emily and Sean’s son. I appreciate that Casting Director Allison Jones casted a child who favored both parents. Ian was a true star of the film with one-lined zingers. Andrew Rannells plays one of the “moms” and per usual is the unsung humorous hero. Jean Smart plays a small role yet is so stunning. Kelly McCormack, Aparna Nancherla and Rupert Friend lead the supporting cast.

I love when women speak vulgarly. Jessica Sharzer wonderfully adapted the novel by Darcey Bell. The film balances being funny and thrilling. Stephanie was groomed to take over Emily’s responsibilities by learning to stop apologizing and to not be so buttoned up. While the film’s arc is predictable, the build of Emily’s story was fascinating. I am tired of stories where men fall prey to conniving yet alluring women to feel something in themselves. Each character burst with lies that unfolds. “Bargain Basement Tom Ford” is a line. Director Paul Feig moves the camera to capture everyone in the scene. The background played a striking part in the scenes as well.

Composer Theodore Shapiro uses French music to score the film and compliments the dangerous liaisons of the film. I was brought back to Paris. Renee Erhlich Kalfus did a phenomenal job with the costumes even with Sean’s t-shirts. I need to find the pom pom sweater Stephanie wore. Subaru also got great promotion in the film.