Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The To Do List - Movie Review

The To Do List, Maggie Carey's debut feature film both as a writer and as a director, checks off all the key elements of the teen comedy  genre with hilarious antics and raunchy humor from top to bottom. Aubrey Plaza, Bill Hader, Alia Shawkat, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Clark Gregg, and Rachel Bilson star in a movie that goes deep into the mind of a teenager as she opens herself up to every experience she can think of.

Brandy Klark (Plaza) is your typically awkward teenager who has kept her nose firmly planted in her school books while her classmates have been out living it up. She is constantly ridiculed for her meticulously organized approach to education which has left little time for developing any type of social skills. Even her best friends Fiona (Shawkat) and Wendy (Sarah Steele) are constantly trying to get her to open up and experience the joys of high school before they all go off to college.

After an unexpected sexual near-encounter at a party leaves Brandy curious about what she has been missing out on, she decides to create a list of experiences she wants to accomplish during her summer of freedom. By completing her sex filled "to do list", she is also preparing herself to take another shot at scoring with Rusty Waters (Scott Porter), the dreamy, guitar playing older boy she almost hooked up with the first time around. With all of this going on, she barely notices how her one time study partner turned coworker Cameron (Johnny Simmons) has been trying to express his feeling for her with little to no success.

Anyone who grew up during the 90's is going to find so much to point and laugh at in this movie from the funky fashions and scary hairstyles to the now prehistoric pagers and soundtrack songs that will have you busting out the running man right there in your theater seat. Seriously, this movie is a riot just for how spot on every little detail is from the era that gave us neon clothing and hip hop superstars. You'll find hypercolor shirts, denim skorts, and brightly colored overalls alongside songs from Salt N Pepa, Naughty By Nature, and The Cranberries during a nonstop barrage of "No way, I remember that!" moments.

Right now you're thinking, that stuff is cool and all, but is this a good movie?! Well, not only is this a good movie, but it just might be the funniest movie you will see all year. No joke, there are so many laugh out loud moments, my stomach hurt after a while and there was more than one time over the course of the 104 minute run time, I had tears streaming down my face from laughing so hard. Aubrey Plaza really knocks this one out of the park with a performance that rivals anything seen from the great teen comedies of the past from Porky's and Fast Times at Ridgemont High to Superbad and American Pie.

Every once in awhile a comedy comes out of nowhere and just blows everyone away with a brilliant combination of hilarious scenarios and genuine performances and The To Do List fits that bill like no movie has in quite some time. Aubrey Plaza was already one of my favorite up and coming actresses and this movie definitely puts her on a fast track to the top of that list. Of course there are flaws in the story and overall its a little cliched, but you know what...who cares, this movie is freaking hilarious! Go out and see it right now and then go back and see it again.

This is a Red band trailer so there's swearing and stuff.

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