Written by: Screenplay by Jessica Sharzer
based on the novel by Darcey Bell
Directed by: Paul Feig
Release Date: September 14th
A Simple Favor is a well-crafted over the top chess match between two very different but very smart women. Anna Kendrick plays Stephanie, the instagram Mommy Blogger. Her youtube channel is full of last-minute brownie recipes and tips on how to make the perfect friendship bracelet.
Stephanie strives to make the outside perfect and convince everyone she’s the winning Mom, however, her closet isn’t exactly empty of skeletons as she would like most to believe. Blake Lively as Emily is a cool mysterious woman with the perfectly tailored suits, sharp tongue and who is able to make the perfect martini (the trick is that it’s all gin). Two minutes after Emily’s introduction I was leaning to my friend and declaring I was going to be here when I grow up.
Here’s the quick summary:
The unlikely friendship begins one dark and rainy day (isn’t that just so cinematic). Then one day Emily goes missing. As Stephanie begins to unravel what happened to her friend she soon discovers that Emily is not who she thought she was. What unfolds is a storyline that could make even the best Lifetime Original movies pale in comparison in all the best ways. There are twists and turns and it was a rollercoaster of fun.
I don’t know about y’all but Lifetime Original movies with their cheesy over the top drama, deception, and just the right amount of trash bring me warm fuzzy feelings. When I was a teenager, lazy rainy weekend mornings usually meant pajama days on the couch watching these movies with my Mom. We’d get cozy on the couch, with a warm blanket and probably a cup of coffee and just binge watch these amazingly over the top movies. This movie was very reminiscent of those mornings for me. As of late, the trend in the female driven murder mysteries have moved from those once over-the-top films to films that are taken more seriously such as Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train.
This film sits comfortably in the middle as it lovingly pokes fun at the genre and allows for some tension breaking laughs.
While this film is not billed as a comedy it was the sense of humor of the story which made it work. Without it, the endless twists and turns would have exhausted the audience. It allowed for breathing room and to wink at the audience at some of the situations as if the film itself was in on the crazy happening on screen.
Paul Feig who is best known for his female driven comedies (Spy & Heat & Ghostbusters) was able to use his expertise in timing and walk this amazingly fine line of tone. As mentioned earlier too far to one side and it would have been a completely different film and it was that walk right down the middle which took a good film and made it a great film.
I can’t wait to see this film a second, third and fourth time.