The thing most romantic comedies these days hang on to is an outrageous concept. Something that makes it “edgy” or different. “Knocked Up” it’s a relationship built around a pregnancy for an example. “Going the Distance” could be wrapped up in this by just saying it’s a romantic comedy dealing with long distance. Doesn’t sound that ground breaking, but then you think about it and barely any movies deal with this topic. At first it’s simple, boy meets girl, they fall in love, then they live on different coasts. What makes it work is the movie doesn’t loose itself in romantic comedy stereo types and plays it a little more real. Drew Barrymore and Justin Long who have a real life on and off again relationship, are so charming you can’t help but love what you’re watching.
“Going the Distance” tries to balance itself with romance and raunchy humor. This movie is a Judd Apatow film mashed with “500 Days of Summer”, it’s cute but has a decent amount of dick jokes in it. With Charlie Day(Always Sunny in Philadelphia) and Jason Sudakis(SNL) the guy moments in this movie really work. Both side kick characters are pretty funny and land most of the laughs. The film bounces back and forth between jokes and dealing with what a long distance relationship is about. The movie really works when it shows how long distance can be straining. With constant texting, phone sex failures, and general missed calls. We see them visit each other back and forth. From New York to San Francisco, this is where the movie looses some steam. When Justin Long’s character goes to San Fran things slow down a bit. Normally I love Christina Applegate but here she plays a neurotic sister of Drew Barrymore and she is just too much. Her raunchy lines just come off as forced. There is a hilarious dinner scene but still the over all trip lags the film a tad.
Over all though the movie is charming and it is a breath of fresh air seeing a romantic comedy based off real life. When the two meet and they fall in love easily and are both witty and charming, no bull shit just two regular people having a good time. Also Drew Barrymore’s character has her own life, trying to become a news paper writer when the business of news papers is dying. She tries to find work in New York, but there are no jobs. Her choice of being in San Francisco is her decision and it’s nice to see a female character that runs her own life and that is not based off being around her male counter-part.
There are moments where the movie teases us with stereo types that always happen in these movies, but those moments are small and really don’t hurt the film. Frankly this is one of the only great date movies in the past several months. It deals with a topic a lot of couples go through and it’s raunchy factor makes the movie a very good time.