As their theater closes, an improv troupe contemplates what happens next.
Directed by Mike Birbiglia
Starring Mike Birbiglia, Keegan Michael Key, and Gillian Jacobs
Initial Review by Phil Crone
Over nearly a decade and thousands of hours of listening to The Adam Carolla Show, I’ve become more and more fascinated with the art of improv. Carolla is a gifted improviser, and he will occasionally harp on the important rules of improv and his days in improv in his 20’s while he waited on his big break. That, coupled with my love of Saturday Night Live in my formative years, drew me to the subject matter in “Don’t Think Twice.” Writer/director Mike Birbiglia brings those themes to life in a recognizable way here. I really enjoyed “Don’t Think Twice” for its memorable cast of characters and small moments that will stick with me, even if the overall narrative was a little lacking.
Everyone likes looking at a picture of themselves. It starts when we’re young, right? In the 80’s and 90’s, Polaroids were like magic and you couldn’t wave them fast enough to see how good the picture was. I remember being enthralled with the wizardry of watching myself on the TV as my uncle was filming us at Christmas in the 80’s. Today, people actually die trying to get pictures of themselves. Toddlers demand to see instant results of the picture or video on your phone. There’s just something inherently satisfying about seeing ourselves. Maybe it’s an ego thing or maybe it’s just curiosity, but it’s always a powerful draw.
Broadcast News is a tremendous example of what makes movies and tv shows about the news such an appealing medium for Hollywood. Network, The Paper, Anchorman, NewsRadio, Newsroom, etc. Much of the appeal to me seems that the principal characters (anchors) in real life walk that perfect fine line between normal person and celebrity that Americans love so much. I remember seeing a local Evansville weather guy singing smooth Karaoke at the Fox and Hound in the early 2000s and the college girls were swooning. If he wasn't on tv they'd have been clowning the old bald guy who couldn't sing.
Broadcast News reflects the "these are real people with real insecurities" angle more than the celebrity angle and crushes it. Holly Hunter, Albert Brooks and William Hurt shine in their roles. For Brooks, when you add this movie to Taxi Driver he might be the all-time best friendzoned actor. William Hurt's biggest flaw is that he isn't handsome enough by modern standards to play the guy getting by with only his sexiness and charisma. Otherwise he nails it. Personally I partly wondered if he wasn't smarter than he let on and played that role enough in order to use the strengths of those around him to propel him farther faster. Holly Hunter was brilliant while playing the perfect producer and only slightly less so playing the bumbling personal life crying out loud in moments by myself lady.
Best Writer/Director nom for the mediocrities from me for James L Brooks and Best everything else noms for the movie and cast.
The only thing that kept it from A+ (this is an A) for me was I think they went too far in the polar opposites of Hunter and Brooks being perfect at what they do and completely worthless outside that zone. Brooks' sweating scene looked like it was from Airplane! and Hunter packing an entire box of condoms is a total rookie move.
JUST SOME IDIOTS GIVING SURPRISINGLY AVERAGE MOVIE REVIEWS.
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