Complete A-Z list

Drinking Buddies


Stars: Olivia Wilde, Jake Johnson, Anna Kendrick, Ron Livingston, Jason Sudeikis, Ti West

Director: Joe Swanberg

Not sure if this four-hander is about drinking or sex: but probably both. Anyway, two couples take a break from their blue-collar jobs (at yet another beach house!), but each guy fancies the other man's girl.

Kate (Wilde) is a supervisor at a beer factory; but Chris (Livingston), her boyfriend, develops an appreciative eye for Jill (Kendrick), the girlfriend of Kate's co-worker Luke (Johnson). The girls consequently spend more time on holiday with each other's partner and, on their return, Chris tells Kate that it 'isn't working'.

Luke, however, never quite gets around to telling Kate how he feels, and it all doesn't quite end the way you might expect.

Life is messy, we accept that, but we do expect it, on screen at least, to be interesting. The characters as depicted here aren't particularly sympathetic and don't exactly reach out and grab our attention. Wilde perhaps gives it a bit too much, Kendrick is annoying (only partly her fault) and only Livingston catches some of the nuances of real life.

This kind of story also needs to build to some kind of emotional climax, but, alas, Drinking Buddies goes nowhere quite slowly. It isn't bad, though; just unmemorable. It's hard to see queues forming round the block for this one.

David Quinlan

USA 2013. UK Distributor: Sony (Stage 6). Colour by Color Collective.
90 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 0, Swearing 2.

Review date: 26 Oct 2013