Someone Great (2019) ☆☆☆(3/4): Three young ladies’ eventful day


Netflix film “Someone Great”, which was released a few days ago, is a modestly enjoyable comedy film about one eventful day of three young ladies in New York City. While it is predictable and conventional in many aspects, the movie is at least equipped with enough comic spirit thanks to the occasional moments of sharp wit and humor, and it is also constantly buoyed by the engaging performances from its three main cast members.

At the beginning, the movie shows how things recently become sad and daunting for Jenny (Gina Rodriguez), a young music journalist who has been in a relationship with a guy named Nate (Lakeith Stanfield) for last 9 years but then happens to break up with him when a big change comes into her life. She finally gets hired by Rolling Stone as she hoped, but that means she will soon move to San Francisco, and she and Nate come to argue over that matter before eventually deciding to end their relationship.

When her two friends Blair (Brittany Snow) and Erin (DeWanda Wise) hear about her break-up with Nate, they instantly ready themselves for supporting and cheering up their friend, and they and Jenny happen to come across a good opportunity for having a big fun together. A popular but exclusive music concert is going to be held at some spot in the city during the upcoming evening, and all they need is someone who can give them three VIP tickets for that music concert right now.

Of course, their quest for those music concert tickets turns out to be longer than expected, and the screenplay by director/writer Jennifer Kaytin Robinson cheerfully bounces from one funny moment to another. For instance, there is a silly scene where Jenny and her two friends have to deal with a trio of dopey rich teenagers who may give them the tickets, and then there later comes a humorous scene in which Jenny and Erin drop by a ravishing place belonging to a flamboyant marijuana dealer played by, surprise, RuPaul Charles.


Meanwhile, Jenny cannot help but think of how everything looked fine between her and Nate during last 9 years. Not long after she suddenly found herself dumped by a guy who was her boyfriend at that time, she happened to encounter Nate by coincidence, and something immediately clicked between them right from the start. As shown from the following series of flashback scenes, they sincerely loved each other, and it seemed nothing would come between them, but she also vividly remembers how their relationship became strained even before their eventual break-up.

In addition, the movie also pays some attention to the respective private matters of Blair and Erin. While she seems all right with her kind and fastidious boyfriend Will (Alex Moffat), Blair gradually comes to feel the growing discontent inside her, and then she finds herself doing something she never imagined when she happens to have a little private time with Jenny’s ex-boyfriend Matt (Peter Vack), with whom she once had a very intimate moment a few years ago. In case of Erin, she loves her girlfriend Leah (Rebecca Naomi Jones), but she hesitates when Leah suggests that they should be more serious about their relationship, and she is not so eager to meet Leah’s friends for a brunch.

Although it is occasionally a bit too contrived, Robinson’s screenplay smoothly handles its story and characters as balancing itself well between comedy and drama, and cinematographer Autumn Eakin constantly saturates the screen with colorful lights for accentuating the stylized mood surrounding the main characters of the film. Around the narrative point where Jenny and her two friends eventually go to that musical concert, the movie goes further with more spirit and excitement, and the cameo appearance by Questlove and Jessie Reyez surely adds some authenticity to this part.


Above all, the movie is supported well by its three main cast members. While Gina Rodriguez, who has been mainly known for TV series “Jane the Virgin”, is instantly likable right from her very first scene in the film, her co-performers Brittany Snow and DeWanda Wise steadily hold their own spots around Rodriguez with their contrasting personalities, and the comic chemistry among these wonderful actresses are simply infectious – especially when their characters happen to sing together at a local convenient store.

In case of the other performers in the movie, some of them did a little more than filling their small spots. While Lakieth Stanfield, who has been always interesting to watch since his breakthrough supporting role in “Short Term 12” (2013), brings considerable warmth and sensitivity to his scenes with Rodriguez, Alex Moffat, Peter Vack, and Rebecca Naomi Jones are also fine in their respective supporting roles, and Rosario Dawson has a little juicy fun during her brief appearance early in the film.

On the whole, “Someone Great” is pretty predictable while also not as uproarious as other recent female comedy films such as “Bridesmaids” (2011) or “Girls Trip” (2017), but it serves us enough amount of laughs as maintaining its good-hearted attitude, and it is one of more entertaining offerings from Netflix during this year in my inconsequential opinion. Sure, this is a familiar stuff, but it is a competent one at least, and you will probably have a fairly good time with it.


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