Review of the Week: Girl Most Likely

Hot diggity damn, movie fans. Girl Most Likely is 2013's biggest comedy train wreck not named Grown Ups 2. What a dismal, insipid piece of trash. What a consummate, irredeemable failure. What a sloppy, stupid spectacle of atrocious acting and exponentially worse script writing. What a gaping quagmire Kristin Wiig has found herself in with no manner of salvage or escape.

Take your enemies to this monstrosity and steeple your fingers oh-so-villainously as you witness their bafflement transform into rage. Watch as they try to justify the cost of the ticket (and weep at the futility) or else rationalize an early exit against their time and soul particles lost forever. Not since Keira Knightly quivered and gyrated for the first 45 minutes of A Dangerous Method has a film been so accidentally but utterly unwatchable.  

Here's what you're in for, if certain among your mortal sins require an especially gruesome method of self flagellation:

Kristen Wiig is Imogene (what a hip, quirky name!), a down-on-her-luck failed Manhattan playwright.  

And it gets worse.

After an artless breakup with her distant, laughably archetypal Wall Street boyfriend, Imogene fakes a suicide and ends up in the "care" of her drunken, gambling-addicted mother (Annette Benning, phoning this performance in from a great distance). Together, they bumble back to kitschy Ocean City, and Imogene manages to "find herself" in the most flaccid, predictable ways imaginable.

A cast of one-note, generically eccentric characters round out Imogene's depressing Jersey sphere — her mother's fake-CIA boyfriend (Matt Dillon); her autistic-esque brother who's obsessed with mollusks and galumphs around in some sort of fiberglass shell; the musical-theater hunk (a type-cast Darren Criss), who's boarding in Imogene's childhood room and sings Backstreet Boys' covers at the local casino. He assures Imogene scene by unbearable scene that she's actually pretty and cool and talented!  

In a touching moment, Criss — and hell if I can remember anything about his dumb-ass character other than the fact that he went to Yale — tells Imogene about how he found one of her mind-blowing scripts in a secret hole in her old bedroom. It was called Imogene Becomes a Woman or something and rhapsodizes on the subject of her period. Criss, bless his heart, sincerely tells Imogene about how moving and wonderful a play it surely would have been.

Notwithstanding Wiig's enormous comedic talent, this is surely one of the decade's most unromantic romances. The total lack of chemistry makes calling the film a rom-com problematic, never mind the fact that the "comedy" is even more suspect. You'll be able to tabulate your total laughs on a single hand. One.

The film opens on Friday at the Cedar Lee Theatre, Cinemark Valley View and Regal Crocker Park.

About The Author

Sam Allard

Sam Allard is the Senior Writer at Scene, in which capacity he covers politics and power and writes about movies when time permits. He's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and the NEOMFA at Cleveland State. Prior to joining Scene, he was encamped in Sarajevo, Bosnia, on an...
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