‘No Hard Feelings’: Cast & Crew
Director: Gene Stupnitsky
Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Andrew Barth Feldman, Laura Benanti, Matthew Broderick, Natalie Morales, Scott MacArthur, Ebon Moss-Bachrach, Kyle Mooney, Hasan Minhaj, Jordan Mendoza, Amalia Yoo, Alysia Joy Powell, Quincy Dunn-Baker, Matthew Noszka, Zahn McClarnon, Madison Odenborg
Available On: Netflix, BookMyShow Stream
Duration: 1 Hour 43 Minutes
‘No Hard Feelings’: Story
On the brink of losing her home, Maddie (Jennifer Lawrence) finds an intriguing job listing: helicopter parents looking for someone to bring their introverted 19-year-old son (Andrew Barth Feldman) out of his shell before college. She has one summer to make him a man or die trying. Will she be able to make a man out to the 19-year-old? Or will she end up losing her home? Will she end up screwing the 19-year-old boy? Or will her feelings get crushed by un-fuckable ways? Well, for all that you’ll have to watch ‘No Hard Feelings’.
‘No Hard Feelings’: Performances
Jennifer Lawrence brings the necessary zest to this sex comedy. Her performance lifts a pretty predictable storyline to a worthy enough watch. It takes tremendous courage on the part of such a hugely popular actress to do an entirely nude fight sequence, that too on a beach. Even if you leave that out, the rest of her performance is so unabashed that you’re instantly liking her character. You’re totally smitten with her ways of the world and want her to be your best buddy for life. The way she makes the character tomboyish makes you like the character even more. It’s her performance laden with sexual innuendos and one-liners that you wouldn’t get enough of. She carries the entire weight of the film solely on her performance and comes out with flying colours.
Andrew Barth Feldman is decent, even though his geekiness needed to be out there a bit more. For example, every geeky, nerdy or shy character in the history of movies has always worn specks. Here’s Andrew Barth Feldman doesn’t, which sort of drops the geeky value of the character. Also, the way his character changes from being the meek one to being the one to stand up for his own rights is too swift. The change could have been kept till the very climax and then he should have burst out, which would have made the audience more engrossed in the narrative.
None of the other supporting characters has a stand-out performance.
‘No Hard Feelings’: Script, Direction & Technical Aspects
Gene Stupnitsky’s direction misses out on the necessary tropes of a sex comedy. Making the nerdy guy look geekier, making the outburst more evident and expressive – these are usual tropes which people love to watch in sex comedies. Sadly, Gene Stupnitsky tried to go the other way by trying to go subtle in many ways. Sadly, it didn’t work that well.
The writing by Gene Stupnitsky and John Phillips is predictable to the core. You know every nook and corner of this story. There are no new surprises.
Eigil Bryld’s cinematography is decent overall. Being shot is pretty much live locations, a lot more of the exotic locales could have been shown. But, where Eigil Bryld’s work stands out is the brilliantly shot naked fight sequence of Jennifer Lawrence. It has been shot very aesthetically and therefore, it does not make it inappropriate and vulgar on screen, and at the same time it keeps the essence of the story. Kudos to that!
Brent White’s editing could have been a lot harsher as the story kept on dragging quite a bit in the middle. With the predictability of the plot keeping on increasing with every scene, it would have been good to see some longish scenes getting pruned a bit so as to at least reduce the overall viewing time.
The music by Mychael Danna and Jessica Rose Weiss is decent. The background score helps to transport you to the serene suburban surfing summer town.
‘No Hard Feelings’: Can Kids Watch It?
‘No Hard Feelings’ rides high wholly and solely on Jennifer Lawrence’s performance. Her unabashed way of performance added to the aesthetically shot nude fight sequence, makes her the standout feature in the entire film. Honestly, the film’s storyline is too predictable, and with some of the usual tropes of a sex comedy missing, the film isn’t too foot-in-your-mouth as well, which is needed for a sex comedy. However, it’s still a decent One Time Watch. I am going with 3 stars.