Post Grad - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Post Grad Reviews

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Super Reviewer
May 23, 2013
A sadly uneven movie that falls apart with its schlocky third act, and completely undoes (1) a relatable story about an exemplar of the generation of children told they were wonderful for their entire lives (only to discover upon leaving college that they're only as wonderful as their peers), (2) a charming (if cliche) romantic plot, and (3) borderline hilarious supporting character work by Michael Keaton, as the heroine's dad. The way the character gets out of her bind is entirely based on a series of coincidences, and it's all-too convenient to seem meaningful or even plausible. A friend said to me that she felt when watching this that in the end, the main character should have failed. I completely agree; had she failed, but retained some sliver of success or learning from the journey, the film could have been a winner. As it is, though, it seems to be yet another surprising, promising slice-of-life chewed to pieces by the Hollywood pap machine.
Super Reviewer
½ September 9, 2012
A bland concoction on the surface about the difficulty of life after the certainty of college (hence the title), noticeably buoyed by the much-better-than-the-material cast. But even their efforts fail to raise much interest in the sugarcoated Disney-esque proceedings.
Super Reviewer
April 17, 2010
Meager comedy
Super Reviewer
April 29, 2011
Matt Saracen is in this. He's awful in it because this movie is awful, but he is there and he is cute.
Super Reviewer
January 28, 2010
Very, very and very predictable movie. Nothing special. Something you can skip without regretting.
Super Reviewer
½ August 18, 2009
It was ok, but not something I'd care to watch again.
Super Reviewer
August 19, 2009
Very cute movie but I didn't like when the cat died.
Nate Z.
Super Reviewer
½ March 4, 2010
Ryden Malby (Alexis Bledel) has just finished earning her degree at college. Now she's ready to step into the so-called real world. Her father and mother (Michael Keaton, Jane Lynch) wish her good luck as she tries to get her dream job. But then everything doesn't go according to plan. Ryden doesn't get her dream job just out of school, and while the rest of her classmates are obscenely pipelined into fabulous jobs, she cannot even get a job. So Ryden endures humiliating jobs, including working for her daffy dad, while trying to keep her sky-high expectations in check.

The movie actually has a small amount of promise at the beginning, believe it or not (most of you understandably keep your doubts). Ryden opens the film in a brisk narration explaining her life's plan, which involves getting good grades, getting a scholarship to a school, and landing a job at a specific publisher (as if another editing gig at a different company would be a career disappointment?). She's a good student with a strong work ethic that has driven her thus far and gotten her several key internships. And then she steps out into the job market and realizes ... she's not alone. Other candidates her own age have similar qualifications and even more; she's no longer a big fish in a small pond, if you'd prefer your explanations in the analogical sense. This is fertile dramatic ground that not too many movies have treaded before. Sure, other films have dealt with culture shock and perspective altering, in abundance, but what modern movie has dealt with the idea that you aren't hot stuff? There are plenty of other people out there just as talented and capable, and you have to do more than work hard to succeed. It's admittedly not an easily inspirational message, but that's what caught my interest early and made me forgive the lame attempts at humor (people step in cat poop!). But then around Act Three, Post Grad guts itself for an absurdly undemanding happy ending and spills its squishy guts. Ryden gets the job she was passed over by doing ABSOLUTELY NOTHING other than wait out the first hire (incidentally, class valedictorian and Ryden's mortal enemy, played by Ivan Reitman's attractive daughter -- weird). I hope this paragraph doesn't mislead people into thinking Post Grad sticks with this hardened perspective, because as soon as Ryden doesn't get her dream job it just becomes an exhausted recycling of teen flick clichés that the ghost of John Hughes wouldn't bother to touch.

Even though this movie is derivative up the ying-yang, I believe that Post Grad's biggest hindrance is its main character. Ryden never once comes across as sympathetic on her supposed journey into adulthood. She tackles adversity with whining and a lot of that exasperated sigh/harrumph-ing that moody teenagers do to passive-aggressively express their dissatisfaction. She also falls into that familiar teen comedy landscape where her lifelong best guy friend (Zach Gilford) has been harboring a crush for ages, obvious to everyone except Ryden. That's because Ryden can't see beyond her own problems and self-perceived injustices. All she talks about is her self; she's pretty much a vapid twit. Here are a few examples that manage to strangle any attempt for the audience to empathize with the blue-eyed pipsqueak: 1) Ryden is so positive she's going to get her dream job that she write a check for a posh $1200 a month apartment. This does not go well. 2) Ryden is talking to her hunky Brazilian neighbor (Rodrigo Santoro) and over the course of one glass of wine the 18-year-old is ready to hop in the sack with this older stranger. Unfortunately, Ryden's family walks in on these shenanigans because nobody ever locks their doors so that interruptions can occur during awkward moments. And 3) Her friend/unknown crusher asks her to come to his show, where he plays a song he wrote for her about his love! She somehow completely forgets about this to prove how unworthy of being immortalized in acoustic guitar she is. Post Grad would be an infinitely better movie if the main character were eliminated completely.

The tone of this movie flies back and forth erratically. Ryden's family members are like the leftovers from a Quirky Indie Family rummage sale. They all have to exhibit some banal eccentricity so it seems like they're auditioning for a future reality show. The family stuff is just bizarre and played for spineless comic absurdity. There are also plenty of celebrity cameos just to pad the running time. Later in the movie, the family accidentally runs over the Brazilian neighbor's cat. I thought, "Oh there's no way this kind of movie murders a cat for laughs." Surprise! The cat gets murdered for laughs, which leads to an awkward cat funeral where the pussy gets laid to rest in an oversized pizza box. This concept is not without humor, but it is tonally inappropriate for this movie. Post Grad is a soft, fuzzy teen flick that barely earns a PG-13 rating thanks to a few naughty words and Bledel removing her shirt during her takedown of the Brazilian. There is no reason for this movie to go down dark avenues of comedy. It's be like watching an Amanda Bynes movie and suddenly watching her inject heroin into her vein (Fun fact: Bynes was initially cast as Ryden and dropped out. You know you're in a bad situation when you're picking up Ms. Bynes' leftovers).

The inanity of this movie is almost unbearable. I think it's going to become like a piece of shorthand with my friends whenever someone refers to something resoundingly dreadful. "Man, the date I went on was so totally Post Grad," or, "This audit totally Post Grad's it." Try it out with your friends the next time you have a social gathering. Someone has to try and make these things stick, slang-wise.

I like Alexis Bledel as an actress. I like teen movies when they approach their subjects with heart or wit. I don't like wasting Bledel's talents and my time with this lightweight nonsense. I'm having trouble wrestling up enough energy just to complete this review, which might explain some of the scattershot references (a desperate man's attempt to stay sane). Post Grad is written by a woman, directed by a woman, which makes the finished product feel like a girl-on-girl crime. Then again, would I single out the gender of the litany of male screenwriters when badmouthing the shoddy work? Apologies for what seems to be amounting into a stream-of-consciousness essay on everything except Post Grad. That's perhaps the best summation: a movie so powerfully mundane it anesthetizes all brain activity. Just sit back in your lobotomy-like state and grin.

Nate's Grade: D+
Super Reviewer
½ January 31, 2010
While Post Grad is not a particuarly "good" movie no matter how you slice it, I am having a hard time condemning it. There is denying that it is a shallow, tepid, corny, and uninspired mess. Still, it is remarkably entertaining and fun to watch. Actually, if you ignore Micheal Keaton's character, the Micheal Cera wannabe, and 'Jessica', the film is actually pretty good. Carol Burnett is hilarious. Personally, the whole 'Oh damn! I've got to do something with my life!' things is fairly relevant right now. As far I know, this is the first major role Alec Bledel has had in a film. While I wouldn't say that she is brilliant and riveting, she gives a good performance all things considered. she cannot be that great when she does not have exceptional material to work with. Still, Miss Bledel really does have the talent to carry a film on her own. if and when she stumbles upon the right director and material, the world better watch out! So, overall, Post Grad is not going to light any fires. Its sweet and sentimental entertainment, that while pleasent, is lost and forgotton as soon as it is finished.
Super Reviewer
½ August 14, 2009
I didn't have very high expectations on this one after reading some of the reviews, and I'm glad I didn't, because I would have been disappointed if I did. As it was, I expected a by the numbers chick flick, and that's what this is.
Likeable cast make this a good one to rent out on the weekend.
Super Reviewer
January 29, 2010
Predictable, annoying, and boring romp that at first appears to be the story of a recent college graduate stepping into the real world becomes a vehicle for Michael Keaton, who just happens to have a 22 year old college graduate for a daughter.

Ryden (Alexis Bledel) has just graduated and wants her dram job, which she won't get because who the hell wants to watch a movie about a grad getting a job? She fails to get any job and continues to play a cat and mouse game with her best friend Adam (Zach Gilford) over a relationship that goes down a road so obvious it's in the sub titles. Of course, she has the crazy father (Keaton), the even crazier grandmother (Carol Burnett), the normal mother (Jane Lynch), etc.

I can't really pinpoint the problems with Post Grad directly. Mainly, the movie feels more like Michael Keaton's movie because his lunacy runs most of the show. It's like he's trying to re-capture his Night Shift days. It comes off more annoying than anything as the main character gets overshadowed by her fathers excesses. The film collapses under its own weight, delivering a predictable mess that we've seen time and time again.
Super Reviewer
August 12, 2009
Alexis Bledel, Zach Gilford, Michael Keaton, Jane Lynch, Carol Burnett, J.K. Simmons

Ryden Malby graduates from college and is forced to move back into her childhood home with her eccentric family, while she attempts to find a job, the right guy, and just a hint of where her life is headed.
Cute, funny, quirky movie with a mix of a love story. Definitely would fall under the category of a chick-flick. The legend Carol Brunett plays the grandmother in this film and she is her usual hilarious self. Liked it, didn't love it.What I would love however is to see Alexis Biedel in some more serious roles. The girl can act, just needs to be put into the right roles. But surely this is a movie for those who like the chick-flicks.
Super Reviewer
½ August 23, 2009
The movie is about a girl who finished near the top of her class in college yet cannot find a job so she ends up back at home with her crazy family. Then there is the love interest, Adam, a guy she has known for years who has always liked her but she's now enamored by her new good-looking but way older Brazilian guy (Rodrigo Santoro). I've always liked Michael Keaton and he is a lot of fun to watch as the girl's dad. Post Grad is far more likely to appeal to teen girls. I just found it the whole movie bland.
Super Reviewer
August 22, 2009
It was cute, but definitely cheesy at times. I don't think I would've liked it as much had Bledel not been in it. Gilford was funny though, and I've always liked Jane Lynch.
Super Reviewer
January 16, 2010
This was a cute story and one I think a lot of us college grads can relate to!
Super Reviewer
August 22, 2009
I don't know why very few people liked this movie. It has charm and Alexis Bledel lights up the screen as a 22 year old college graduate who finds herself unemployed and living with her parents, when she expected many opportunities after college. I also liked Friday Night Lights' Zach Gilford as Bledel's long time friend who has always loved her more than just a friend.

There wasn't much in the movie that seemed original though. You have the grandma (Carol Burnett) that has the family watch her try out coffins. The supporting upbeat father (Michael Keaton) that gets Bledel embarrassing jobs. While, how many times has a movie been made where the best friend has a big crush on the main character ? I found the movie entirely predictable and cliche....,yet there was never a doubt in my mind that I liked the movie. It was always likable and harmless, which is why I'm surprised that so many people hated the film.
Super Reviewer
½ August 20, 2009
Nothing special, but a really charming Alexis Bledel makes the movie work as well as some help from underrated Michael Keaton, and the always funny and awesome Carol Burnett. On a side note Jane Lynch needs more starring roles the lady is due for a breakout role.
Super Reviewer
½ September 4, 2009
Good-natured but totally insipid. I saw Post Grad for free, and I still felt cheated. Vicky Jenson's live-action feature film debut is as predictable and boring as these things go-- I trulywish I had the right snarky remarks and what-were-they-thinking observations to evoke how bland beyond belief the whole thing is, but really, I can't. It's just mind-numbing. And Alexis Bledel may twinkle her cyan peepers all she wants, she still can't come across as a convincing, confused college graduate. I did not care for her Ryden Malby-- not when she is surrounded by artificially loopy relatives, not when she is hopeless at finding a job, not when she is torn in-between two hunky sweethearts. Equally deplorable is the shocking misuse of a great cast that includes Jane Lynch, Michael Keaton, Demetri Martin and Carol Burnett. Anyway, don't see Post Grad; it's cute for about ten minutes... and then it just tastes like cotton candy double-dipped in butter.
Super Reviewer
½ August 22, 2009
Cute, typical chickflick. Alexis Bledel is a very charming young actress, but this movie doesn't showcase all that she can do. She really should be doing some more challenging work; she went for a safe film here. There are some nice performances from Michael Keaton, Carol Brunett, Jane Lynch, and Zach Gilford, as well. It was better than some of the crap romantic comedies I've seen this year, but not the best movie in the world. Cute film with a great message, and definitely worth seeing.
Super Reviewer
August 20, 2009
I love Alexis Bledel, but there was absolutely no chemistry between her and the male lead, her best friend. The movie jumped around in pieces, wasn't funny in spots it should have been, the soap box derby had no relation to the storyline - saw it for free, so I won't complain though - love that girl's eyes :-)
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