Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Tonight's Movie: Set It Up (2018)

A pair of exhausted executive assistants plot to induce their bosses to fall in love in SET IT UP (2018), an original Netflix romantic comedy.

Harper (Zoey Deutch) is an assistant to famed sports reporter Kirsten (Lucy Liu), who has left ESPN and is now running a website startup. Harper has been hanging on to her job in hopes of getting a writing break, but she's always too busy handling the minutiae of her boss's life to progress in her own career.

Elsewhere in the same building, Charlie (Glen Powell) works as assistant to Rick (Taye Diggs), a venture capitalist; Charlie is hoping for a promotion which will be the next step in his career advancement.

After a "meet cute" squabbling over rights to a late-evening food delivery for their bosses, Harper and Charlie get the idea that if their employers had something else to keep them busy -- like a relationship -- maybe they'd get to go home from work at a decent hour. To that end they arrange for Kirsten and Rick to be trapped in the building elevator, then seat them together at a Yankees game and pay someone to turn the "kiss cam" on the twosome. And so it goes, with Harper and Charlie finally having some time to enjoy life outside the office, until Rick and Kirsten are engaged.

There's only one problem: After the engagement is announced, Charlie and Harper eventually realize that Rick is two-timing Kirsten. What to do?

This was a very enjoyable and amusing film in many respects, and I have it on good authority that the depiction of an assistant's life is incredibly accurate. Knowing someone well who's "been there" made the movie a particularly entertaining watch for me.

Deutch and Powell are both appealing, and I also found Liu a lot of fun to watch. Liu brings a lot to the table with a multifaceted character who is simultaneously obnoxious and admirable. Diggs is unfortunately stuck playing a real jerk in every regard, without any character depth.

The only downside to this film is an inordinate amount of discussion using sexual terms, which gets very old very quickly. I find it hard to believe real people are that continuously crass in their everyday conversations, but maybe I hang out with a different crowd! So I recommend the film for an adult audience but with that qualification; a Hallmark family romance it's not.

SET IT UP was written by Katie Silberman and directed by Claire Scanlon. The movie was filmed by Matthew Clark.

SET IT UP streams on Netflix. The trailer is here.


Blogger Patrick said...

Too bad about the salty language and the under-written part for Diggs because this actually sounded like a cute movie. I pretty much will watch Lucy Liu in anything....

2:21 PM  
Blogger Lee R said...

The seeming delight in using the foulest of language in modern films today and for the past 25 years for that matter has always rung a totally false note with me, as far as being "real life dialogue". I must hang out with all the right people too, no one I know uses the f word twice in each sentence. I think these 1/2 witted modern writers THINK this is the way most real people talk. Maybe it's just a case of lying with dogs and getting fleas, they may surround themselves with dogs.

6:33 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Jinzo 2400, if you like Lucy Liu I'd say it's worth seeing...her character is definitely imperfect but I've worked with a couple people like her, she was interesting.

Lee, the language is a definite frustration of mine when excessive use mars otherwise good films. I think THE BIG SICK was one of the worst offenders for me in the language department. It becomes meaningless "white noise." Among other things, I don't think the filmmakers or actors understand the lack of maturity it conveys to many viewers. Ah well...

Best wishes,

11:22 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Newer›  ‹Older