How to Be Single(2016)
Welcome to the party.
Dakota Johnson (Fifty Shades of Grey) and Rebel Wilson (Pitch Perfect) lead this New York-set not-quite-rom-com about two pals trying to figure out the best way to be single in a city that never sleeps (but often sleeps around). Co-stars Alison Brie (Sleeping With Other People), Leslie Mann (This is 40) and Damon Wayans Jr. (Let’s Be Cops).
On Demand, DVD & Blu-Ray
Available from 5 providers
BY Steve Newall Flicks Writer
Amid generic rom-com fare - which, for the record, I’m not necessarily opposed to - lies the odd interesting angle. The Five-Year Engagement was pitched as a comedy about the journey between proposal and wedding (and coincidentally featured How to Be Single’s Dakota Johnson and Alison Brie billed 12th and 4th in the cast respectively); David Wain's They Came Together sent up the genre hilariously; and Trainwreck saw Amy Schumer offer a more relevant, if hardly unconventional, rom-com. On paper, and as the title declares, How to be Single sets out to do something different, too, but unfortunately falls victim to the same formulaic clichés you’d think it would avoid.... More
As the film commences, Dakota Johnson’s character takes a classic on-screen “break” from her boyfriend to find herself; her sister Leslie Mann is avoiding emotional and maternal urges through workaholism; Alison Brie is taking a concerningly OCD approach to finding the perfect man; and Rebel Wilson is being Rebel Wilson, aka the actress Hollywood can’t stop casting as the large and outrageous friend who parties heaps. So far, so Sex and the City, in the composition of a 'classic' female foursome.
Over the course of the film, the female leads will have their assumptions challenged, and - because they are all completely wrong about their lifestyle choices, we’re told - settle for conventional, socially satisfying solutions. Only Johnson will truly explore the premise of the title, and without spoiling the film’s advice, it comes as little surprise The Bell Jar figures.
It’s to the film’s credit that it depicts a contemporary dating life with no slut shaming. But as How to be Single has more rom than you’d expect and is light on the com, it doesn’t work as either something fresh, a modern womanifesto or laugh-filled effort.Hide