WEEKEND WITH THE MOVIES — THE INTERVENTION
Most of us will face this fundamental question at some point of our travels. How to beat a massive jet lag? For those of you who are immune to all kinds of homeopathic anti-jetlag cures and melatonin and those who no matter how hard they try for the first few days just can’t adjust to the new time zone and the night and day routine, I am with you! When chamomile tea does not work and I do not want to refer to last resort, aka sleeping pills, I kill my insomnia with my favorite sins, which are reading and movie watching. When I am restless and frustrated that it is almost 3 a.m. and I am still awake, let me tell you, only movies work.
A perfect late night movie, which will not scare you and bore you to death but instead will nicely tuck you in for a decent sleep is “The Intervention” from 2016, directed by Clea DuVall. First, I need to tell you that I am a huge indie movie junkie, if this genre still exists, as according to the massmedia everything under the sun right now seems to be either colossally mainstream or just indie, as if nothing existed in between. However, I can assure you that movie is a very good quality old-school indie. In my opinion, there is something charming and addictive about watching movies focusing on the theme of friends’ gatherings. One of the very best films in this category is The Big Chill from 1983, which most of the friends-obessed movies have been trying to imitate with better or usually much worse results (see: “About Alex” for the latter).
Movies about good and loyal friends watched at dawn bring an extra dose of comfort to a frustrated mind trying to operate above the time zone’s restrictions. “The Intervention” gathers a group of young American actors known for their classy acts in American television and various less known movies. Among other actors who are all excellent in their characters, there is Jason Ritter, known best for the role of younger boyfriend in Parenthood; Melanie Lynskey, who I remember two well from Two and a Half Men, although she has an impressive number of roles that followed; Alia Shawkat recently modeling Rachel Antonoff’s collection at NYFW and well-remembered from a super funny episode of Broad City and the director Clea DuVall who also plays one of the friends in the movie.
Story is plot-simple but psychologically deep as it presents 8 friends meeting for a weekend getaway in a beautiful family home in Savannah, Georgia for what is secretly plotted as an “intervention” for the falling marriage of one of the couples. Don’t turn your back on this yet! There is so difficult to find an honest story portraying the problems of thirty-somethings in a modern cinema. Here, we are very close to success. Each relationship presents its own universe of problems. There is a same sex couple Jessie and Sarah who are trying to grow up together and overcome their insecurities when it comes to long-term relationships. There is Annie and Matt who rescheduled their wedding date 5 times. There is Jack whose wife died recently and now he is traveling all over America with much younger free-spirited Lola. Finally, there is the married couple with children for whom the intervention was supposed to be held, Peter and Ruby. Obviously, when you watch those friends, you realize that each of them would benefit from some kind of intervention and as the weekend goes on, the tensions grow. The movie though does not turn into some cheesy indie drama which I am personally sick of. It keeps the pace while being genuinely funny and touching. It was soothing in a way that although I stayed up until 4 a.m., next day I felt my jet lag was gone. If you haven’t watched The Big Chill, watch it first. Then, watch The Intervention and tell me what you think! Friends in need are friends indeed and it is so pleasant to watch it on the screen when it is done in a simple, yet intelligent and entertaining way. Hope you will enjoy it!