Going the Distance (R) ★★★☆

Drew Barrymore as Erin
Drew Barrymore as Erin
Going the Distance Poster
Going the Distance
Charlie Day, Jason Sudeikis, Justin Long and Barrymore
Charlie Day, Jason Sudeikis,
Justin Long and Barrymore
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Lots to Laugh About as Barrymore and Long are Hysterically Funny

Drew Barrymore otherwise known as America’s sweetheart plays a very different role in a romantic comedy that addresses two issues in America today; landing the ‘big’ job and long distance relationships. Drew’s on and off the screen boyfriend Justin Long co-stars and they are magic together. There’s no denying the chemistry and the heartfelt emotions of these lovebirds. What also makes this romantic-comedy so much fun is the smart script and the supporting cast of Jason Sudeikis, Charlie Day and Christina Applegate. Directed superbly by Academy Award nominee Nanette Burstein of (On the Ropes 1999), I found myself laughing out-loud almost non-stop through the entire film.

Erin (Drew Barrymore) a disenchanted thirty-something journalist intern for a local newspaper paper meets Garrett (Justin Long) a music industry scout who just so happens to be very content with his job and the two have a whirlwind 6 week relationship that turns into something special. Either actually sought out the relationship as both were fairly content going along as carefree singles. When they discover that they actually have very strong feelings for each other, the film takes a serious turn as Erin hasn’t found her dream job yet and is determined to do so even if it means living across the country. And-live across the country is actually what they attempt. She in San Francisco and he in New York. Ultimately, sacrifices on both of their parts come into play and life goals are questioned.

Erin is thunder-bolted when she realizes that Garrett, a party-guy who’s two roommates could easily be considered his ‘frat brothers’ has a hold on her that she can’t shake loose. As their relationship becomes long distance, the couple encounter more obstacles than they bargained for. Garrett’s friends Box (Jason Sudeikis) and Dan (Charlie Day) don’t like losing their best drinking buddy to yet another rocky romance. Garrett’s behavior of constantly texting Erin and being one track minded wears thin with the guys. At the same time, Erin’s neurotic, overprotective married sister, Corinne (Christina Applegate), wants to keep Erin from heading down that all-too-familiar bad boyfriend path.

Going the Distance is a very different type of rom-com that gets so many things right. The jokes are actually funny through-out and at times raunchy, the issues/conflicts the couple faces are current with today’s economy. Another plus is the fact that the two main stars either were in love during the filming and or have been girlfriend and boyfriend at one time. Their chemistry is obvious as well as their raw emotions during their separation scenes.

The unsettling aspect of job issues in the film, are in reality what our young people are facing today. The perfect job is not so easy to come upon in our shrinking economy. College grads become interns well into their thirties, while their biological clocks are ticking away. A smart script to be sure by Geoff LaTulippe, ‘Distance’ attempts to show couples how to make a long distance relationships work and when to compromise and say, ‘enough is enough.’

Bottom-line: Very funny script, charming leads and memorable supporting characters.

Sarah Adamson © September 3, 2010