Table 19 isn't as funny as the trailers convey, but the film's heart-felt story is carried by the weight of its ensemble cast and a solid script by The Duplass Brothers.
Jeffrey Blitz‘s Table 19 is surely going to be skipped over this weekend as James Mangold‘s Logan takes all of the attention and that’s too bad, because Table 19 is a solid little quirky wedding drama that brings together strangers in the most heart-felt of ways.
Eloise (Anna Kendrick) has recently been dumped by the best man of a wedding. The bride also happens to be one of her oldest friends, but due to a recent string of events, Eloise has found herself at the table of randoms and misfits aka Table 19.
It is at this table that she makes new friends that are equally struggling with their own personal demons, yet have still managed to make it to the wedding to have a good time.
And a good time they have as the group gets into trouble, attempts to laugh at some of life’s complexities and eventually find their way back to the ballroom for one last slice of wedding cake.
Jeffrey Blitz directs Table 19 with a soft distinction that separates his film from other mainstream affairs. This isn’t a laugh-riot event or one that you’ll be quoting for years, but this is still a very strong blend of comedy and drama.
Admittedly, the trailers paint this one out to be a more standard comedic film, but the actuality is a heart-felt drama with comedic bits sprinkled in.
And that’s okay, because Anna Kendrick and the rest of the ensemble cast can handle the weight and then some. They all bounce off each other so well, even if their roles feel like minor moments in their otherwise larger careers.
This one isn’t going to be breaking the bank or earning anyone Oscar noms, but it does gently remind you that guys like Craig Robinson and ladies like Lisa Kudrow can still deliver fine performances that contribute to the greater cause of the film.
Even Wyatt Russell manages to turn a surely one-dimensional performance into something a little more.
Table 19 is all about turning in a little more than expected around almost every corner. I credit that partially to Jay and Mark Duplass‘ script, which is written with a great understanding of life and the ups and downs that it throws at us around every corner.
They write in a way that doesn’t make the story a complete bummer, but definitely allows more room for reflection and redemption.
The script does sag a little and wraps things up rather too neatly, but it works in the service of the film and the story trying to be told.
I won’t tell you that Table 19 is the must-see movie of March, but I’m glad that I gave it my time. It’s rare that a film like this comes across in the mainstream market that’s so unafraid to be messy and honest. There are decisions in the film that characters make that you’ll surely judge while watching, yet would probably end up doing once you go home and get put into such a situation.
It’s funny how easy we are to judge others, yet turn the tables the second something like this resembles our own lives. Table 19 does a great job collecting up messy, yet lovable characters and putting them into a film that feels like it’s straight from the heart, on a writing, directing and acting standpoint.
I enjoyed it and I’d easily recommend it to those that thought the trailer was their cup of tea. There’s a bit more going for it than you’d expect and it’s not as funny as you’d think, but it’s still a good film with reliable performances and a memorable script.