Trainwreck (R)

Comedy 122 min. July 17, 2015
By Stephanie Zacharek
Amy Schumer can be lacerating. She's also sometimes more likely to leave your jaw hanging open than to make you laugh, which is one of the downsides of comedy that's crafted to make a point: There's often something lecture-y about it, as if we're being made to atone for years of laughing at plain old dumb stuff. That's the price we pay when we wish -- as we all do -- for smart comedy, and Trainwreck, if nothing else, strives to be smart.

Trainwreck is Schumer's first starring movie role; she also wrote the script. And while the picture is occasionally very funny -- because when she lets loose, Schumer does have a fantastic, loosey-goosey wiliness — it also feels carefully constructed to make its points, chief among them that men can get away with all kinds of bad or crazy behavior that women can't.

Schumer plays a hard-drinking magazine journalist who is determinedly uncommitted and noncommittal; her parents' marital breakup, years before, led her to doubt whether monogamy is even possible. Then she meets a sweet, successful, super-nerdy orthopedic surgeon, Bill Hader's Aaron, who's unlike anyone she's ever known. She falls for him, irrationally and almost immediately.

Schumer may be the writer and star, but Judd Apatow is the director, and in the end, you can't escape the feeling that somehow Schumer's vision has been wrestled into the template that nearly all of his movies, even the best ones, follow: one in which the comforts of conventional partnerships and family life are what we should all aspire to. Apatow and Schumer probably believe they've made a feminist picture, but this is a conventional movie dressed as a progressive one.
Judd Apatow Amy Schumer, Bill Hader, Brie Larson, Colin Quinn, John Cena, Tilda Swinton, LeBron James Amy Schumer Judd Apatow, Barry Mendel Universal Pictures

Watch the Trailer

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