Directed By: Will Gluck
Starring: Mila Kunis, Justin Timberlake, Patricia Clarkson, Richard Jenkins, Woody Harrelson, Richard Jenkins, Bryan Greenberg, Andy Samberg, Emma Stone
Screenplay: David A. Newman, Keith Merryman, Will Gluck
UK Release Date: UK - 9th September
Quick Plot: Jamie and Dylan have both had their fair share of failed relationships, after becoming friends they realised that they are perfect for one another..to have sex with. Deciding to have a no strings attached- sex only- relationship they promise to not let feelings get in the way. Can't be hard right?
No Strings Attached that came out earlier this year. Same storyline and both star one of the girls from Black Swan and two actors from That's 70's Show! I would continue in this sarcastic manner if Friends With Benefits wasn't good but thankfully it was the opposite.
So Friends With Benefits isn't anything special or unique, especially with a similar (or replica- whatever you prefer) film having been released not so long ago. Yet, Friends With Benefits is really good for it's genre and I believe that's because of director, Will Gluck. Easy A took most of the world by storm last year and it's easy to see that Gluck has a speciality at making real life situations hilarious and thoroughly believable, though it's not extraordinary it's certainly something that's hard to come by in comedy films today.
Unlike No Strings Attached the characters of Jamie and Dylan are extremely likable. Mila Kunis' role as the 'emotionally damaged', waiting for 'Prince Charming' Jamie, is different from most rom com's leading ladies though still clichéd and similar. But because of Kunis fine talent of humour and good acting, the character is amiable to the audience which is obviously the film's aim. And even though we hate to admit it, Justin Timberlake is a far better actor than we ever expected. Though Dylan doesn't quite reach the impressiveness that The Social Network's Sean Parker did, you can see that Timberlake isn't the usual singer turnt actor we're so use to, he's passionate enough to give it his all (Though I very much miss your music JT please make another album). The pair certainly have chemistry which holds the film together and their on going bickering is charming. They're at their best in scenes together which luckily for us is about 90% of the film. Jamie's eccentric, party going Mom, Patricia Clarkson is another of the comedy stand outs and sadly Dylan's gay colleague, Woody Harrelson, isn't quite as funny as you want. Luckily the leads keep the film together as far as the characters can go.
From the trailer you knew the film essentially bases around lots of sex but the bedroom scenes aren't glorified in being the big scenes. They are important in being the funnier scenes but some are edited into sweet montages which gives off more of an emotional surge than I think it means to. With cute clichés such as the realisation that they are in love to the big act of trying to win the person back, the film is an overdose in cuteness which is down to the leads.
It's not an overly 'laugh out loud' comedy but Friends With Benefits is very funny (a lot funnier than No Strings Attached) and has the right amount of emotion for a Rom Com if you excuse the unneeded family storyline Dylan's father (Richard Jenkins) has.
Typical rom com but with plenty more laughs and sex but the leads have evident chemistry which makes the film better than most of the gushy stuff we see today. It's a must see if you love the genre.
Friends With Benefits official trailer