The Spectacular Now stars Miles Teller, Shailene Woodley and Brie Larson, and revolves around the life of Sutter Keely (Teller). His philosophy on life is encapsulated in the title – he’s a hedonistic party goer who thrives on living in the moment, to the irritation of his girlfriend, Cassidy (Larson). But when Cassidy breaks up with him, it forces him on an emotional journey surrounding life, love and his future as a man – which picks up speed when he meets Aimee Finecky (Woodley).
The Spectacular Now is a fantastic coming of age drama with a strong romance element. It’s easy to identify with Sutter’s character – soaking up every moment he can before high school ends, and ‘real life’ begins. But it’s also easy to see the immaturity in some of his actions; such as when he makes a deal with Aimee that they should both stand up to their ‘overbearing’ mothers, even though they obviously come from two different contexts. This isn’t a problem though – it definitely works to the film’s advantage in presenting the image of high school kids, who haven’t had experiences of problems in the ‘real world’. Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley play their parts with beautiful realism and truth – Teller as the self-styled ‘player’ who is almost determined to not fall for Woodley; the not-so-typical nice girl who reads manga comics, and who’s first experience of romance is with Sutter. Teller also plays the emotional side of Sutter brilliantly – the scene in his car after he meets his dad (Kyle Chandler) for the first time in years is just straight up filmic gold for me. The Spectacular Now is one of those rare films whose drama resonates with you long after you’ve seen it – mostly, in my opinion, because of outstanding performances by a stellar cast, and a thoroughly romanticised ending, which I love.
This is exactly my kind of film, and to see one this modern, and with such an up-and-coming cast that still manages to emanate power and feeling is just inspiring. Please go and see this film; I have it on good authority if I can get enough signatures then Shailene Woodley will be the next Bond girl… Miles Teller might have to wait for the one after.