Once upon a time kindness came from the heart. Without fanfare or expectations, it is something that can be random as it arrives unfettered. Simple acts like opening a door for someone or helping a person pickup the spilled papers from their briefcase, these acts need not be elaborate or expensive. I remember a time when drivers were not as aggressive, where the kindness of strangers played a part in everyone driving from point A to point B. Another area that I feel really has changed from years ago is the dating experience. Back then it was less calculated or maybe I should say not as risky. With the internet, people now can investigate a potential date. I remember a co-worker who would go online to checkup on a prospective date. They had to have a high credit score before they would go out with them. From the stories I have heard plus my own experiences, meeting a person can be a challenge. Some of the “rules” out there are to always meet in a public place, let someone know where you will be, never go home with a stranger on the first meeting; there really are many land mines dotting the dating landscape. My story is not unusual; after a few dates I received a phone call that they were in dire need of $300.00 and would I loan it to them. I apologized to them that I did not have the available funds and asked about their friends. They had a ready excuse but in my mind I felt it was odd to ask me after only 4-5 dates. Imagine, I never heard from them again. I chalked it up to me being one of the lucky ones. HURTING from a painful breakup with her boyfriend Dave, played by Morris Chestnut (The Call, The Perfect Holiday); Leah, played by Sanaa Lathan (Out of Time, Something New), appreciated the kindness extended to her from the stranger standing next to her at the cafe. When she bumped into him again Leah wondered if he was to good to be true. This dramatic thriller had a story that was done many times before. I thought the cast, which also included Michael Ealy (Think Like a Man, Seven Pounds) as Carter, did a good job where I enjoyed a couple of suspenseful scenes. However, this was not enough for me to enjoy this film. The redundant silly script was not believable with all of its cliches and predictability. The only thing that I felt saved this picture from crashing down was the whole good vs evil setup. I sensed this from the audience sitting around me at the theater. Just as an online profile may be better than the actual person, the trailer for this movie was head and shoulders above the actual film. There were a couple of brief scenes with blood.
1 3/4 stars
Everyone has their own way of dealing with the heartache from a breakup. For me, I lose my appetite, fall into a depression and if you can believe it, watch more movies. It is a real challenge when I still need to be upbeat and motivate the members in my classes. Lola, played by Greta Gerwig (Greenberg, Damsels in Distress), was only a few days from being married when her fiance called off the wedding. The story followed Lola as she free fell into a chaotic life filled with eating, drinking and a whole lot of confusion. I have enjoyed Greta’s performances in the past and though I thought she was okay in this film, I felt she was directed poorly. Her character was not as sympathetic as it could have been; I lost interest within the first half of the movie. Interestingly, I thought her fiance Luke, played by Joel Kinnaman (Safe House, The Darkest Hour) did a sufficent job with his role. I am not comfortable with things that are extreme. With Lola, I felt she was acting out in such a drastic, negative way that it was not likable to me. By the end of the movie I felt ambivalent, just grateful I did not have friends like that around me.
1 3/4 stars