GOING THE DISTANCE Review

It is good to see Justin Long getting back to what he should be doing. I found it odd he took so many projects that didn't concern his comic talents, and though this can surely be appreciated and understood, it doesn't bode well with ones core fan base that the last "comedy" he was in was "He's Just Not that Into You," and that's not counting what was essentially a cameo in 'Youth in Revolt' earlier this year. All this is to say that I am glad Mr. Long, who has never really possessed movie star qualities, is back to doing what he does best. Directed by first time feature director Nanette Burstein, 'Going the Distance' has a time tainted quality to it. From the soundtrack to the way in which its shot, the style of it, the color palette. All of it creates the feeling this story took place in the 80's. If not for cell phones and the bit about the newspaper business being in trouble it probably could have been. It is nice though, slightly refreshing and to sum up the actual movie compared to your expectations would be to say it is much raunchier than you probably expect but it tips the scales by being a lot more cutsey than you may have expected as well. We like the characters from the get go and although I've never found Drew Barrymore particularly attractive I very much liked the person she was in this film. Her Erin matches with Long's Garrett so well they have us buying into their love half an hour into the film. And that first half hour is pure greatness, the meet-cute, the quirks, the great sense of humor they both share, the super-knowledge of bar trivia, it is all very touching and more importantly funny. Where the movie slides into raunchiness it is forgiven because it is just genuine humor. This is mostly due to the supporting players of Jason Sudeikis and Charlie Day. Day gives a performance what will make you ask, "who is this guy?" after seeing the film. He steals every scene he is a part of with his raspy and comical vocal tones. This is bad news for Sudeikis though who shares pretty much every scene with Day and is pushed back to being the second-funniest friend. Ive always liked Sudeikis and for that reason I appreciated him here and hope he begins to get larger roles, although he does have one classic rant here that concerns the purpose of his mustache. As the movie begins to feel repetitive in its latter half, the quirks and sparks fade a little and we are simply waiting for the resolution that we know will come. The movie leaves us guessing for a bit, but there is never any real doubt that Garrett and Erin won't live happily ever after. This isn't a bad thing, it was a fun ride. Hopefully this is Justin Longs first step in the direction of more comedy.