Spencer's Review of Drinking Buddies
It's understandable why some people want nothing to do with this addition to the Mumblecore genre, and why others find it delightful, funny, and obscure in many ways. The most interesting aspect of the film's production would have to be the fact that there was no shooting script and that all of the dialogue was completely improvised by the entire cast. It's one of those films that feels organic and real in its characters and the things they discuss. I'm not sure how, generally, there is a script when dealing with scenes that feel this real and improvised. Each of the characters are interesting, the dynamics between the core characters revolve and keep you guessing throughout, and it ends openly. Unlike many romantic indie films there isn't any judgment on the actions of different characters and the outcome isn't a morality lesson. Instead we're viewing the characters as vulnerable individuals. They are completely flawed, lovable messes, and we're never sure about which way the plot is going to go. The relationship between friends Luke (Johnson) and Kate (Wilde) is always in flux, and while you secretly want them to be together, to fall in love as their predecessors have always done before them, there's this seedy underbelly that veers that assumption off course. We want the payoff of a romantic comedy, but we don't want to see Luke's girlfriend Jill (Kendrick) hurt in any way. Then there's misdirection and that relationship becomes questionable. Director and writer Swansberg has said that the ending is up for interpretation, but you can find solid evidence of a conclusion by the end. The film covers two friends struggling against their feelings for one another, and that can't quite be reconciled by the end. Still, the film can be interpreted to be about the shakiness of modern relationships, and how we doubt love, even when we're at our strongest. Either way it's an interesting and funny watch.