If it isn't enough that he wrote a darn good screenplay, Favreau plays the lead character, Mike, admirably. He's a lovable dude, even when you can't believe some of the idiocy on display when he's in his relationship funk. And that voicemail scene?! Ouch. I almost wanted to block out the screen, while laughing out loud at the same time. Surely the most memorable Favreau scene in his filmography.
The movie transitions very nicely from this buddy ensemble to a sweet romance in one scene at the bar, and you can't help but cheer when he hangs up on his ex, knowing that he's ready to move on.
Money, baby, money!
Wannabe actors become regulars in the stylish neo-lounge scene; Trent teaches his friend Mike the unwritten rules of the scene.
When released in 1996, "Swingers" became an indie film sensation on par with "Sex, Lies, and Videotape" and "Reservoir Dogs" earlier. To be honest, it didn't really deserve that status, because it doesn't have the power either of those flicks held. Still, its quite enjoyable and easy to see why it became a favorite among dissatisfied twenty something males, with whom the flick touched a nerve. The characters spend their time cruising the hip nightspots of Hollywood trying to pick up chicks, and often failing either due to their bloated egoism or social awkwardness. Some critics of the film thought it was a bit misogynistic, and maybe it was, but it was also a rather accurate depiction of how many males in similar circumstances feel.
The technical credits all around are quite good for a low-budget picture. The direction by Doug Liman isn't anything extraordinary, but it keeps the film moving at a quick pace. Its a shame that after this and the equally enjoyable "Go", he graduated to lousy mainstream products. The script by Jon Favreau is full of memorable dialog, classic scenes, and surprisingly a sympathetic protagonist. As the main character, Favreau creates a likable individual and Vaughn is charismatic here, but hasn't really done anything worthwhile since. All in all, this isn't an extremely powerful motion picture or anything like that, but its a breezy and amusing way to kill an hour and a half.
These guys aren't idiots. Sure they believe that they are destined for stardom and that they are so "money" that women cannot deny them, but rather than walk blindly into every embarrassing situation, deep down they recognize that they are failures. So even though you cannot help but laugh at them, Liman makes us sympathize with the characters as well.
Like many of us, they have grown up on a steady diet of Scorsese films and they truly believe that real life is just like the movies. In a way, I almost admire their myopia. And I certainly admire Liman's ability to make this story more than a paint by numbers buddy comedy.
Favreau is great and it makes me miss the days when we got to see him during the picture rather than just the end credits. Also, it was good to see Vince Vaughn playing someone else rather than Vaughn playing Vaughn.
It isn't revolutionary cinema, but it is a great watch and much smarter than I think it's fan-base gives it credit for.
Mike: The whole Judy Garland thing kinda turned me on. Does that make me some kind of fag?
Trent: No, baby, you're money.
Swingers is a movie about guys for guys and Jon Favreau and Vince Vaughn were "money" in their roles. Favreau plays a guy who has recently gotten out of a relationship with a girl he'd been with for 6 years. Favreau also did the writing for this movie and it is very good. Vaughn is great as the club hopping ladies man. There's a very good supporting cast in this as well. Patrick Van Horn is very good, as is Alex Desert(Jake from Becker). It's funny throughout and has a great pace. The movie flys by.
A very cool movie that entertains for an hour and a half. I didn't think it was very funny but it was the story more like what I enjoyed more. This film could prove that nice guys "don't" finish last.This movie teaches us to always double down on an eleven in black jack and how many days to wait before you call the girl for the first time.
Mike Peters (Jon Favreau) is a struggling actor who left New York, and a girlfriend behind, to find success in L.A. The move caused his girlfriend of six years to split up with him six months earlier and left him feeling alone and heartbroken.
In the opening scenes of the film, Mike talks about his situation with his friend Rob (Ron Livingston), another thespian from back east. Mike feels miserable about their conclusions. Afterwards, while on the phone, Mike is coaxed into an impromptu Las Vegas trip by his new best friend, and also actor, Trent (Vince Vaughn) to help Mike get over his ex. The trip starts out on a high note with excitement and anticipation but soon takes a turn for the worse when Mike crashes and burns at the casino. Soon after, the guys manage to meet some ladies and just when it seems as if though Mike can make some progress and salvage the trip, it all falls apart again and this time Trent goes down with him.
On the ride home, Trent gets Mike to feel better about himself and to look at the positive side of things. Mike promises to try his best to move on.
Now back in L.A., Mike and Rob get together for some golf and to talk shop. Later that night, Mike and Trent are getting ready to hit the Hollywood hills, at their actor friend Sue's (Patrick Van Horn) apartment. With the vibes feeling right and things going well, Mike and Rob meet up with Mike's pal Charles (Alex Désert), yet another starving actor, at a local bar where they admire the beautiful women. Soon afterward they rendezvous with the others and they all finally make it to a party where Mike makes an ill-fated attempt to get back into the game, while Trent gives the guys a lesson in how to handle the opposite sex.
The guys agree to head to their favorite after hours spot and after watching Trent and Sue effortlessly meet some girls, Mike is clearly shown feeling lower than ever but not yet defeated. Trent and Sue convince Mike that he is in control so he finally makes his move like he's got nothing to lose and he actually meets Nikki (Brooke Langton) and gets her phone number. Success at last or so he hopes.
The swingers leave the lounge and narrowly miss getting into a brawl in the parking lot caused by Sue's temper yet averted by Sue pulling a gun which no one else was aware was even a part of his attire. The group splits up but not before angry words are exchanged among friends. Mike is left feeling desolate once again.
To make himself feel better, Mike decides to call Nikki but he blows any chance he has with her when he goes overboard in their "conversation". Now he feels as if he has truly hit bottom and he sits alone in his apartment, missing his ex more than ever and contemplating a move back to New York. Rob comes over to console him and, after some serious talk, he feels like it's time to get back in the saddle again.
Mike meets up with the guys at Sue's, where he discovers that he has missed some changes in the group dynamic. That aside, apologies are exchanged, and the nightlife once again awaits them. The next stop is a Hollywood night club for swing night. The guys enter through a makeshift VIP entrance in a style that pays homage to Director/Writer/Producer Martin Scorsese.
Once inside, the guys let the good times roll and Mike spots a beautiful woman whom he decides he wants to meet. He gathers all his courage and approaches her confidently. He finds himself in an actual interesting conversation with the young and single Lorraine (Heather Graham). They are soon swing dancing and the chemistry between them is incredible. The night ends well and Mike, Trent and Sue head to an afterhours meal to discuss the particulars. Mike finally appears to be on his way to moving on and feeling good about himself.
The following morning Mike receives a phone call from his ex. She wants to talk about their state of affairs, but when Mike decides to answer another incoming call, he is greeted by Lorraine. He has to make an immediate decision as to which path he wants to go down and in a moment that solidifies his regained self-esteem, he puts his past behind him and chooses to take a chance on someone new.
In the closing scene, Mike meets Trent for coffee and they enjoy one more good heart to heart while Trent is brought down to earth by a reminder that even when you've got it, you can't win 'em all, in an ending that suits the swingers perfectly before we leave them on another sunny L.A. day.
Swingers is the quintessential guy movie. Not to say that a woman won't enjoy it, or that it's a stereotypical collection of all the things that men are supposed to love in movies, like a non-stop testosterone-fueled orgy of naked women, explosions, and violence.
Nope, Swingers is the quintessential guy movie because almost every guy can relate to at least part of it at some time during his life. The uncertainty about your career, the lingering pain of losing a girlfriend you truly loved, the camaraderie (and annoyances) of your friends, the frustrating world of dating and the games and "rules" that come along with it, and the feeling of that moment when you finally realize that your life can go on without that other person it revolved around so long.
The story focuses on Mike (Jon Favreau), an aspiring comedian in Los Angeles who has recently gone through a break-up with his long-term girlfriend back east, and his group of friends. Most of whom try to help Mike get over his break-up by meeting women in and around L.A. and Las Vegas. Especially his two best friends, ladies man Trent (Vince Vaughn) and Rob (Ron Livingston) Most of the movie follows the group on their nightly romps through the city, or Mike as he struggles with the loss of the relationship that he was very much invested in.
I enjoyed the casual conversations the guys had about women, video games, their job efforts, and other things. Swingers really nailed the dynamics of how guys act with each other.
It's also pretty funny, though it's not a total comedy by any means. A lot of the humor derives from Mike's painful attempts to talk to women, after six long years off the market. There's a really hysterical sequence about Mike and a woman's answering machine later in the movie that will have you howling.
I got the sense that Swingers is the kind of movie that holds up well after repeated viewings, and maybe even gets better. It's not amazing, or anything like that, but it is hard to imagine anyone (especially guys aged 20-29) not appreciating it.
It also reminded me a lot of one of my favourite tv shows, Entourage, which I'm sure now has gathered a lot of its inspiration from this comedy classic. And the fact that it was written by Jon Favreu bodes well for the upcoming Iron Man film, which I hope will be of the same great quality.
A great guy movie, about guys livin' the life in their 20s trying to conquer the club scene, the women scene, and breaking into the Hollywood scene.
Its essentially a semi-autobiographical movie for everyone involved, seeing as how all the stars and the director were struggling around this time, getting bit parts in various projects, and here they are with a movie about it.
Jon Favreau and Vince Vaugn make a perfect team/foils for each other. The soundtrack is hip. The dialog is hilarious and at the same time sharp and clever.
Trent: They're gonna give daddy the Rainman suite, you dig that?
Mike: Do you think we'll get there by midnight?
Trent: Baby, we're going to be up five hundy by midnight!
Trent: Vegas baby! Vegas!
The movie starts almost with a mini-film of sorts, showing the journey of Mike and Trent to Vegas for a few hours at night, showing us how smooth Trent is and how much of a lovable loser Mike can be.
The movie then heads back to LA, where we see all the guys head out for some club livin', having Trent give Mike advice on how to play it cool, not to mention some downtime in order to play hokey on SEGA.
Trent: I don't want you to be the guy in the PG-13 movie everyone's *really* hoping makes it happen. I want you to be like the guy in the rated R movie, you know, the guy you're not sure whether or not you like yet. You're not sure where he's coming from.
Director Doug Liman also does a great job at getting across the kind of world that these characters have the perception of, and gives the scene they inhabit an almost satiric quality, while at the same time giving it an authentic feeling.
The other members of the cast do a good job, as they are basically representing the trials of breaking into the entertainment industry which at that point they were still doing.
You even get a couple of surreal moments addressed in the dialog and later referenced visually involving the work of past films involving groups of guys who also play it cool.
The movie is accompanied by a hip soundtrack, authentic locations, which also make good use of the live bands and dance scenes.
From the way the story unfolds, by the time the ending comes around, there are bits of irony mixed with the satisfaction of how the characters are handled.
Consistently funny, with a real feel of the life these swingers live.
Trent: You know what you are? You're like a big bear with claws and with fangs...
Sue: ...big fucking teeth, man.
Trent: Yeah... big fuckin' teeth on ya'. And she's just like this little bunny, who's just kinda cowering in the corner.
Trent: Yeah, man just kinda... you know, you got these claws and you're staring at these claws and your thinking to yourself, and with these claws you're thinking, "How am I supposed to kill this bunny, how am I supposed to kill this bunny?"
Sue: And you're poking at it, you're poking at it...
Trent: Yeah, you're not hurting it. You're just kinda gently batting the bunny around, you know what I mean? And the bunny's scared Mike, the bunny's scared of you, shivering.
Sue: And you got these fucking claws and these fangs...
Trent: And you got these fucking claws and these fangs, man! And you're looking at your claws and you're looking at your fangs. And you're thinking to yourself, you don't know what to do, man. "I don't know how to kill the bunny." With *this* you don't know how to kill the bunny, do you know what I mean?
Sue: You're like a big bear, man.