‘I don’t think I like me enough to introduce him to other people…’
A romantic comedy is only as good as its leads. You need to believe in the people at the centre of it all to ignore all the tired tropes, hackneyed dialogue and familiar plot lines. The hook for Leslye Headland’s spirited rom com is that the two leads are both serial cheaters who struggle to maintain monogamous relationships. It’s not much of a plot, but then it’s difficult to imagine a more likable pair than Jason Sudeikis and Alison Brie – except perhaps if Paul Rudd was in the mix…
Lainey (Brie) can’t stop sleeping with married man Matthew (Adam Scott), despite the fact that he is a terrible, awful human being. Meanwhile, Jake (Sudeikis) is also having relationship problems – namely that he is in too many of them. The hapless pair reunite after years apart and begin a platonic relationship in the hope of fixing all of their problems.
Sleeping with Other People isn’t that funny, it isn’t wholly original and it’s entirely predictable. But all of that is ok because it’s such a joy to see the two leads together. This is a couple that you can really believe in. I was invested in these characters and their lives. No matter how unrealistic they became. A supporting cast featuring Jason Mantzoukas, Amanda Peet and perennial best friend Natasha Lyonne obviously help, but this is the Brie and Sudeikis show.
Alison Brie has quietly become one of the best actresses in Hollywood, and Sleeping with Other People is yet another example of her girl-next-door appeal. I want to be friends with her, I want to go out for dinner with Jason Sudeikis. The two of them make for an adorable couple. Basically, they save this movie from being just another rom-com.