Movies in McConomy: Love, Simon and Sorry to Bother You
Over this weekend, two very different comedies will be screening in McConomy Auditorium: Love, Simon and Sorry to Bother You.
Love, Simon is a charming and funny coming-of-age story focused on the titular character, Simon (Nick Robinson), who is a closeted gay high school student. The film isn’t anything particularly special, but for what it is, it’s generally well done, paying homage to classic 80s teen rom coms while adding its own set of twists to the genre and its tropes. All the cast members are on point, with the standout performance coming from Nick Robinson as the protagonist. Most of the film’s humor lands well, although a lot of it is more in the realm of earning a light chuckle than making your stomach hurt from laughing. What makes the film stand out from the large sea of romantic comedies is how honest and painful the film can get. Character choices have consequences that makes the audience care about and relate to them. The film also handles the subject matter of Simon’s orientation very sensitively. Rather than treating it as an exclusive part of his identity that the film harps on for manipulative dramatic effect, the writers integrate his orientation seamlessly into the narrative. Overall, if you are looking for a fun and pleasing film to watch alone or with friends this weekend, Love, Simon is certainly worthy of your time, and you’ll leave the theater with a smile on your face.
On the completely opposite end of the spectrum is Sorry to Bother You, an absurdist arthouse comedy that falls into the genre of “what on earth did I just watch?” Set in an alternate universe, the film follows an Oakland resident, Cassius Green (Lakeith Stanfield), who rises in the world of corporate telemarketing by using his “white voice” to sell products to customers, and events spiral out of control the higher he climbs up the corporate ladder. The film throws itself full force into its unique and stylistic blend of satire, parody, and absurdism, with a unique and eclectic set of characters, all representing exaggerated versions of people in the real world. It touches on modern capitalism, race relations, entertainment, protest, and art, and does so in a way that never gets preachy. Much of the humor will simultaneously leave the audience laughing out loud and squirming in discomfort. The world created in the film is rich and full of life, with a lot of visual humor foreshadowing later events in the story. If there is any flaw with the film, it’s that it drags when it occasionally ditches the absurdist humor. But overall, Sorry to Bother You is a giant, colorful, insane, unpredictable, and ambitious middle finger to everyone, and while it’s not perfect, it’s certainly a must-watch for anyone looking for a unique, well-directed comedy.