No Hard Feelings (2023) Review

By Allison Rose   X Formly Known as Twitter
3 Min Read

No Hard Feelings is exactly what you would expect it to be with something a little bit “extra” thrown in and some extremely funny moments.

What would you be willing to do to make money?  What if you only had two months to earn the money before you lose your house?  As a young-looking, wild, thirty-year-old woman, would you be willing to date and sleep with a nineteen-year-old, socially awkward teenager?

As a parent of a nineteen-year-old, socially awkward teenager, what would you be willing to do to make sure he breaks out of his shell and parties a little before heading off to college? Would you be willing to hire a young-looking, wild, thirty-year-old woman, who would be willing to date and sleep with your son?

Those are some of the questions writer/director Gene Stupinsky (Good Boys) attempts to hilariously answer in his new film, No Hard Feelings.  Starring Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook) and Andrew Barth Feldman (Foul Play), the movie debuts in Theaters this week.

Maddie Barker (Lawrence) is desperate.  Her car, which she uses to get to and from her bartending job and uses as an Uber driver, just got repossessed because she owes property taxes on her deceased mother's home.  It's the only home she has ever known, nestled into a high-end community at the eastern tip of Long Island in Montauk, NY.  Slowly the rich families from New York City have been invading the town making property taxes skyrocket and outpricing the locals who can barely afford to live there anymore. 

One such "rich" family - Allison (Laura Benanti; Worth), Laird (Matthew Broderick; Godzilla), and Percy (Feldman) Becker -  own one of the fancy, expensive houses and are the type of people Maddie despises.  However, when Mr. And Mrs. Becker place an ad hoping to find a young lady to help bring Percy out of his shell, room, and cell phone, before heading to Princeton, Maddie responds.  

Though she is older than they hoped, she pleads her case and they give her the job with the stipulation that Percy can't know about the arrangement.  As their friendship develops, Percy becomes more social and Maddie discovers she has been hiding behind her larger-than-life persona to avoid being hurt.

Stupinsky does a solid job directing this group of talented actors while managing to show off a little bit of the beautiful landscape of Montauk.  His camera angles often make the audience feel as if they are a part of this inner circle of Percy and Maddie while not intruding on their personal moments.  His pacing is good and he edits enough to leave in the important moments of the film while not over-padding it with superfluous montages set to an annoying soundtrack.

Lawrence is a star who can transform into almost any character.  She can play comedy and drama with equal reverence for the scene, her fellow actors, and the message the film is trying to impart on the audience.  Feldman holds his own opposite Lawrence and has a few touching scenes where he even shines.  Broderick turns on his usual boyish charm even as he portrays a man in his late fifties and Benanti blends in well with the group.  

No Hard Feelings is exactly what you would expect it to be with something a little bit "extra" thrown in and some extremely funny moments.  Predictable as it is, Lawrence and Feldman make the movie more than it probably should be which is a testament to their talent and their connection as actors.  

While this is sort of a "coming of age" story for Percy, it is oddly even more so for Maddie and the transformation of these two characters is heartwarming and special.  It goes to show you, how the right person could change your perspective on life.

Grade: B


Cast:
Directed By:
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 103 minutes
Distributed By: Columbia Pictures

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For more information about No Hard Feelings visit the FlickDirect Movie Database. For more reviews by Allison Rose please click here.

No Hard Feelings images are courtesy of Columbia Pictures. All Rights Reserved.


FlickDirect, Allison   Rose

Allison Rose, a Senior Correspondent and Critic at FlickDirect, is a dynamic presence in the entertainment industry with a communications degree from Hofstra University. She brings her film expertise to KRMS News/Talk 97.5 FM and broadcast television, and is recognized as a Tomatometer-Approved Critic. Her role as an adept event moderator in various entertainment industry forums underscores her versatility. Her affiliations with SEFCA, the Florida Film Critics Circle, and the Online Film Critics Society highlight her as an influential figure in film criticism and media.




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