Another week, another pick that we don’t have to explain to you. Due to the nature of our free spirits (and inability to make decisions), we’re kicking off 2018 with whatever the hell we feel like watching. This week’s film has significantly fewer sharks.
Cats. Brunch. Hipsters. Must be Austin, TX.
The Uncondensed Version:
After Emily learns her cat Mr. Roosevelt is in poor health, she jets back to Austin right away. Having set off for LA several years before, she left Mr. Roosevelt in the care of her now ex-boyfriend, Eric. In this time of crisis for the cat parents, Emily crashes with Eric and his serious girlfriend Celeste.
By the time Emily makes it to Austin, Mr. Roosevelt has passed on from this life. A group of Celeste and Eric’s hipster friends have a dinner out and honor Mr. Roosevelt. At the dinner, Emily learns Eric is focusing on becoming a realtor rather than pursuing his dreams of being a musician.
Emily hoped to have more to show for her time in LA, but so far she’s doing cringey auditions, editing videos with a group of men who may or may not be part of a real company, and coasting by on the popularity of several of her Youtube videos. When Celeste asks how things are in LA, Emily freaks out and causes a food-related accident. Jen, a server there, helps Emily and befriends her, leading to several hipster adventures.
After aforementioned hipster adventures, Emily gets a call from the vet’s office that Mr. Roosevelt’s ashes are ready to pick up. Unfortunately, Celeste, who was also a parent to their cat child, arrives first and claims the ashes. She invites Emily to a brunch she’s planning in Mr. Roosevelt’s honor, which makes Emily lose her shit.
Eric helpfully takes Emily out to get tacos, and they later go to a party where Jen is playing with her band, the Leeks. What is meant to be a fun night out takes a dive when Eric and Emily have a heart-to-heart about their breakup, shattered dreams, dismal future, etc, etc.
The next day is the brunch for Mr. Roosevelt, and let’s just say it does not go well.
3.5/5 Pink Panther Heads
Reasonably entertaining with some funny moments (the brunch is an exercise in the absurd), this film suffers mostly because Emily is so unlikeable for 95% of it. She does find some redemption at the end, but it feels like too little too late. Most of the time, she bicycles around doing self-destructive things that have consequences for other people, then acting surprised when there’s not a lot of sympathy being tossed her way. I usually relate to the feeling of being an eternal fuck-up, but it takes Emily a reeeeeeeeeeeeeally long time to stop acting like an asshole.
I imagine this is a bit of a Portlandia for Austin, though all of the time Emily spends judging hipsters feels a bit hypocritical because she’s just a scarf and an oversized pair of plastic-rimmed glasses away from being the biggest hipster in Texas.
Jen is fucking cool, and I wish a lot more of the focus had been on her friendship with Emily. Sadly, it takes Emily a really long time to appreciate when she’s got a good thing going.