The upcoming dramedy film, Young Adult, is the second collaboration between screenwriter Diablo Cody and director Jason Reitman (Up in the Air). They last worked together on the critically acclaimed 2007 film, Juno.
Young Adult stars Charlize Theron as Mavis Gary, a divorced teen-lit ghost writer. She is extremely unlikeable and painfully delusional who lives in a fantasy world not unlike the characters she writes about. A baby announcement from an old boyfriend, Buddy Slade, sparks a sudden desire to return to her small hometown in Minnesota in the hopes of rekindling a romance with Slade and relive her glory days of prom queen popularity. The fact that her ex-boyfriend is now a happily married new father does not faze her. But returning home proves more difficult than she thought when her blunt remarks and abrasive personality clashes with others and affirms why she is the girl you hated in high school. However, Mavis forms an unusual bond with a former classmate, Matt, who is facing his own teenage demons and hasn’t quite gotten over high school, either. He was unnoticed by Mavis in high school but becomes her primary confidante especially with Matt’s copious supply of homemade bourbon. They develop an awkward friendship built on mutual sadness and nostalgia.
Young Adult Release Date
Young Adult opens in select theaters December 9, 2011 and everywhere else on December 16
Young Adult Pictures
Who’s In It?
- Charlize Theron as Mavis Gary
- Patrick Wilson as Buddy Slade
- Patton Oswalt as Matt Freehauf
- Elizabeth Reaser as Beth Slade
- Collette Wolfe as Sandra Freehauf
- Hettienne Park as Vicki Robek
The Good Stuff?
Young Adult has already been picking up high praises from advanced screenings and even some Oscar predictions. Everything about the film just works—you’ve got a great director (Reitman), a smart and funny script (courtesy of Cody) and a stellar cast. Theron gives a bitchy, biting and layered performance that shows us just why she is an Academy Award winner. Comedian Oswalt surprisingly portrays vulnerability quite well in his role and shows us that he can hold his own opposite an Oscar winner.
The Bad Stuff?
Here’s a little spoiler from the screenwriter Diabolo Cody which she has said during an interview: “I am of the mind that assholes don’t change… And also, people in general don’t necessarily change in the dramatic way we see them change in the third act of movies.” Young Adult’s anti-heroine, Mavis, can become a bit too much to take and you’d hope she’d do something to redeem herself in the end. This could be a good thing—that Reitman really stayed true to the character; or a bad thing—the character is so screwed up that the audience won’t have any sympathy for her.