Popcorn Time: “The Overnight”

Sundance favorite pushes boundaries

Mark Hanni

Staff Writer

 

Marriage is weird. Sharing a bed may be difficult, joining finances can be hard and making new married friends can feel awkward. It seems that many friends you once had before marriage start to dwindle as the vows are said. “The Overnight” addresses the awkwardness that is felt when trying to make new friends as married adults.

Set in a suburb of Los Angeles, the film follows a married couple, Alex and Emily (Taylor Schilling), who has been in the area for two weeks and is anxious to start making friends. At the park with their son RJ (R.J. Hermes), Alex and Emily stumble into Kurt (Jason Schwartzman). After some small talk, Kurt invites them over for dinner to continue their conversation and meet his wife Charlotte (Judith Godrèche). What starts out as an innocent dinner party soon escalates into a night full of surprises that no one could see coming.

“The Overnight” debuted at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, where it was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize. Since its release, the film has been met with a great critical response. Currently on Rotten Tomatoes, a critical compilation site, 82% of critics gave this movie a positive review. It’s no surprise that critics and viewers love this movie.

The film is full of mystery; there is never a dull moment. It has no boundaries, diving humorously into topics most movies wouldn’t touch. For example, it tackles the taboo topic of male nudity. It’s definitely a change of pace from the normal, overused, slapstick humor seen in modern comedies.

The writing here is a major strong point, hitting viewers with quick one-liners that are hilarious and relatable. One of the most brilliant things about this movie is that at its base, it understands the struggle of finding other married couples to be friends with.

 

The characters are full of life and have great chemistry. Kurt, specifically, is a very well-written character. He is portrayed as the cool and stylish guy, joking about his vegan diet and a recent juice cleanse. The film does a great job of establishing the “cool” couple and the “lame” couple. This is very apparent in the differences in the couple’s hobbies, clothes and topics of conversation.

For example, Kurt and Charlotte speak Spanish and French to their child, while Alex and Emily speak, well, boring old English. Kurt is also developing a water purification system that is being used in third world countries, making Alex and Emily feel unaccomplished in all aspects of life.

If you enjoy witty jokes, identifiable characters and mystery, “The Overnight” is a great choice. It’s a wild ride that moves quickly, not wasting anytime and not wearing out its welcome.

“The Overnight” is available on to buy or rent on iTunes and Amazon.

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