Laggies, starring Keira Knightley, Chloe Grace Moretz, and Sam Rockwell, written by Andrea Siegel and directed by Lynn Shelton, is the story of a late twenty-something woman who befriends a teenage girl while attempting to escape from her life.
Megan (Knightley) is attending the bridal shower and wedding of her friend Allison (Ellie Kemper, acting hilariously ridiculous) where it is becoming apparent that she doesn’t have much in common with her friends and her life isn’t where she wants it to be. After seeing her father cheating on her mother at the wedding reception and then finding out that her boyfriend is going to propose, Megan freaks out and bolts from the reception, where she meets Annika (Moretz) in the parking lot of a grocery store. After buying beer for Annika and her friends, she ends up hanging out with them and finding an escape that she’s looking for.
The film then follows Megan’s journey in figuring out who she wants to be while becoming a mentor and friend to Annika, who has a very estranged relationship with her mother and is in great need of a positive female role model. The script makes this journey relatable without being too ridiculous.
The film feels removed, which is what it sets out to do, separating Megan from her friends and family as she struggles to realize what she wants, as opposed to what her friends or family want. Another way in which the film is successful is in portraying a feeling, that while presented as something to be suffered by those in their twenties, is actually a feeling anyone going through a life transformation and period of personal confusion can relate to.
The film is worth seeing for an entertaining narrative journey. Additionally, as I always note the presence and portrayal of women in film, this is the rare film that has nothing to complain about in that regard. It is a film about a woman, and the story is told from her point of view, follows her journey throughout the entire film, and even has her interact with other women in a positive, non-competitive way. In other words, the film portrays women in a manner similar to the way they are in real life, something that is a real accomplishment and is unfortunately, really worth mentioning.
The performances of all the actors are all great, though Knightley does struggle a bit with the American accent, though not enough to detract from the film.
I’m so excited to have come across a film with positive portrayals of women in ways that are usually reserved for men (mentor relationship, the one running away from a relationship that’s wrong, etc.) that I’m happy to be able to say it’s worth watching on its own merits, and that aspect is an added benefit.
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