Someone Great is now streaming on Netflix.
[Ed. Note: Being that TV and City is on a bit of a hiatus, this article has not been edited.]
By Greg Wheeler
Break-ups suck. They’re messy, horrible, emotional things that make you wish the ground would swallow you up. Someone Great is Netflix’s latest chick-flick, capturing those feelings of despair and hopelessness in the face of a bad break-up. With an inspired Gina Rodriguez at the helm and propped up by a couple of well written, likable friends, Someone Great is one of the better choices in this genre, despite reveling in the usual cliched tropes you’d expect in a film like this.
The film begins with a brief prologue, showing the time prior to Jenny and her boyfriend breaking up. Following a musical montage depicting texts and various forms of communication breaking down between the pair, we pick up with Jenny the day after her break up. With a story peppered full of flashbacks, this female-empowering story is ultimately a romantic comedy about love and loss, rising from the ashes of despair to something stronger and better than before.
It’s a cliched story, no doubt about it, but the emotional weight behind some of the drama and the inspired acting and chemistry between those involved on screen make this a far better story than it has any right of being. Gina Rodriguez, in particular, is excellent, managing to walk that fine line between feeling hopeless and remaining strong for her friends. It pays off too, with one scene late on showing Jenny’s brutal break-up in a raw and incredibly realistic manner.
Someone Great is surprisingly stylish too, with many of its flashback scenes awash in neon glows to reinforce that dreamy feel to these segments. This works really well too, with some scenes late on utilizing some great editing and cinematography as Jenny visits old spots that bring up memories of her past relationship.
While Jenny remains the central focus for much of the film, her best friends Blair and Erin have compelling and well-written arcs of their own, adding some much-needed depth to this film.
Of course, Someone Great isn’t perfect and it does subject itself to the usual tropes you’d expect from this genre. Along with the usual smattering of musical montages and eclectic pop tracks, Someone Great has a lot of drinking and smoking, reinforcing those vices we turn to in the face of tough moments in our life. Despite this, Someone Great does a great job with its emotional moments and while some of the comedy doesn’t always land, the drama absolutely does.
It’s a raw, surprisingly realistic depiction of a break-up and certainly stands out as one of the better options in this genre. If you’re looking for a chick flick to binge, you can’t really go wrong with this one.
I give Someone Great a C+.