Movie Review: Amy Schumer’s ‘Trainwreck’ is Anything But

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With all the hype surrounding Amy Schumer lately and this movie (that she wrote) in particular, I had some pretty high expectations walking into this movie. Walking out of the theatre, I had just seen not only one of the best romantic comedies I had seen in a very long time, but one of the funniest comedies in general. The script was tight, the casting was amazing, and the story was about as realistic as any rom-com can be. I was definitely not disappointed.

Truly, the thing I was most impressed with in this movie was the cast. Every single actor, from the leads, to those who spent mere minutes on screen, absolutely delivered. Bill Hader—who plays Schumer’s love interest Aaron—shows that he’s very comfortable in the leading man role; he’s the perfect balance of sincerity and charm, and of course he has perfect comedic delivery. For once he’s playing it straight, giving a more subtle performance than most other roles we’ve seen him in, and he is the perfect complement to Schumer’s commitment-phobic party girl character who shares her name. Vanessa Bayer, playing Nikki (sidenote: I know she’s supposed to be the girl who’s trying to be chic, but I have to admit that blue eyeliner she’s rocking in her first scene is absolutely fabulous), Amy’s co-worker at a men’s magazine, is a delight in every scene she is in. And don’t even get me started about LeBron James, playing the super cheap, protective best friend of Aaron. Aside from Schumer, he probably had the best lines in the film, and he totally nailed his performance. Truly, every role was a standout in the film.

Plot-wise, it was about as realistic as a rom-com can get, while still bringing that perfect amount of cheese, something I found extremely refreshing to see in a genre that mostly promotes unrealistic expectations of romance. This movie was all about flipping the script on the usual tropes—this time Schumer is the ‘deadbeat’ that we somehow still end up rooting for—showing a character who thinks she knows what she wants, but doesn’t quite see how misguided she is until she finds that right guy to put things into perspective. I think this movie, and the character Amy in particular, will resonate with a lot of people who’ve grown up in the age of rampant divorce. She’s the personification of the cynicism and skepticism in love that comes from seeing a marriage crumble before your eyes, and it’s heartening to see how her story plays out.  And though the ending was a bit cheesy (spoiler: there’s dancing), it played out with the perfect balance of humor, self-deprecation, and heart that makes the whole movie work.

Though I was expecting this movie to be funny, I was really blown away by just how hilarious the script was. In the first 45 minutes of the film, there was never more than a minute that would go by without laughter filling the theatre. As far as jokes go, there was really no wasted dialogue in this movie. I was also surprised by just how much heart this movie had—one minute I had tears in my eyes from laughing so hard, and the next I was wishing I’d brought Kleenex from not only the emotional plot, but the amazingly heartfelt performances. Amy’s sometimes complicated relationship with her family hit me hard right in the feels. Overall, the movie was filled with a lot of funny people who were being a whole lot more than just funny, and it was impressive to see them show off their acting chops.

Though some people might argue that Amy Schumer is over-rated and that we’re just bearing witness to her 15 minutes of fame, I truly believe this movie, if nothing else she has done over the past year, will stand the test of time. I think we’ll be seeing ‘Trainwreck’ on a lot of ‘Best Rom-Coms’ lists for years to come, and I already can’t wait to watch it again!

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