Celeste and Jesse Forever

Directed By: Lee Toland Krieger

Starring: Andy Samberg, Rashida Jones, Elijah Wood, Emma Roberts, Eric Christian Olsen, Ari Graynor, and Chris Messina

Romantic comedies typically have this nice smooth formula that generally leads to a happy ending.  It's rare that we get a break-up movie hitting theaters.  It goes against everything rom coms are about.  It's even rarer that we get a divorce movie.  Celeste and Jesse Forever is just that though.  It's refreshing to get something a little different, and I definitely appreciate it.  You should too.

Celeste (Rashida Jones) and Jesse (Andy Samberg) met at a young age, became best friends, and got married.  Six years later, Celeste has decided to leave Jesse.  Celeste, a successful executive at a marketing agency she co-founded with her partner Scott (Elijah Wood), can't continue to hitch herself to a jobless loser who sits around and cries while watching the Beijing Olympics.  They've been separated for six months now.  There's just one catch.  This separated couple still spends every waking moment together.  They hang out together.  They speak their own little languages together.  They jerk off lotion bottles together.  They even still live together.

Fed up with this nonsense, their best friends Beth (Ari Graynor) and Steve (Eric Christian Olsen) let Celeste and Jesse know that what they're doing is just weird.  If they're separated, they should act like it.  Jesse gets the message and starts seeing other people, namely a woman named Veronica (Rebecca Dayan).  Celeste isn't quite ready for this step and spirals out of control.  She starts dating all the wrong men and ignoring the one right in front of her, a guy from her yoga class named Paul (Chris Messina).  Meanwhile, Celeste's marketing agency gets a new client, pop sensation Riley Banks (Emma Roberts) — a girl who embodies everything Celeste hates about mainstream pop culture today.

Despite the fact that it's a movie about divorce, Celeste and Jesse Forever is a film with a lot of heart.  Written by Rashida Jones and Will McCormack, the movie is full of sharp dialogue and a lot of hilarity.  It's the indie version of The Break-Up, except it's actually funny.  For the lead couple portrayed by Jones and Andy Samberg, the movie is about learning to move on with life.  Celeste and Jesse need to learn how to actually live without one another.  Celeste needs to learn that life is not always about being right.  It's about being happy.  Jesse needs to learn how to not be a bum and that he is capable of stepping up to the plate as a man.

Our two leads have some great chemistry.  Whether speaking with some strange European accents or giving hand jobs to random pointy objects in their vicinity, Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg have some uncanny charm on screen together.  It's a kind of chemistry you don't see too often on the big screen.  That being said, this movie is about them getting divorced so they spend quite a bit of time apart on screen.  These two are equally as entertaining on their own, especially Jones.  The Parks and Recreation star is at her best when her character is at her worst — smoking weed, drinking in the middle of the afternoon, and burping profusely.

The supporting cast is also quite hilarious as well.  Ari Graynor's Beth is an embodiment of the audience in the movie.  She's us.  She says everything we're thinking and gives the happily separated couple a hard dose of reality.  She tells it like it is with some sharply delivered dialogue.  As Riley Banks, Emma Roberts gives us one funny little diva.  Having not seen her since her murderous rampage in Scream 4, she's a welcome addition to the cast as the film's version of a young Lady Gaga.  Fresh from Ruby Sparks, Chris Messina gives another strong performance.  His character Paul offers a lot of wisdom when he's not hitting on women in yoga.  Finally, we have Elijah Wood.  He gets pretty silly as Celeste's gay friend and colleague Scott.  He's always enjoyable though.

Celeste and Jesse Forever is definitely a great romantic comedy that should please the ladies.  The movie is funny as hell with lots of silly, goofy humor.  It gives a fun interpretation of a break-up and a great indictment of pop culture today.  They even manage to get a wisecrack in about Cornell University.  With great writing, great direction, and great performances from all involved, Celeste and Jesse Forever gets a strong 0.03% rating.  Have a wine cooler with this one.