REVIEW: No Hard Feelings
Let’s get this out of the way. Yes, Jennifer Lawrence is fully, frontally, nude for a few minutes of this rom-com. It’s in character and far from salacious, merely adding to the humor and delineating her character.
That said, the R-rated rom-com No Hard Feelings out now from Sony Home Entertainment, is disappointingly predictable, using the nudity to break the typical pattern, adding little to the genre, which needs some fresh life.
Lawrence’s Maddie Barker is in dire need of a new car after the one she used for her Uber gig got repossessed to pay tax debts. She’s 32, barely hanging on, and in need of a lifeline.
Said lifeline comes in the form of the Beckers (Laura Benanti and Matthew Broderick) who want their son Percy (Andrew Barth Feldman) to gain some confidence and maybe some sexual experience before heading off to Princeton in the fall.
While twice the kid’s age, she agrees and they meet and things don’t go well until they do. The end.
There are some themes here, mostly about taking control of one’s destiny, being true to one’s self, and the endurance of true friendship. Lawrence’s Maddie has to address the nearly generational gap between her and her charge and it shows she needs to accept adulthood. But, the comedy isn’t very fresh and the circumstances feel contrived by the numbers, so the script from John Phillips and Gene Stupnitsky, who also directed, needed work. Lawrence is a producer here and if she is to be believed, had a blast making this film, which is certainly a change of pace from her more recent work.
Lawrence is rarely bad on film and gives it her best here, making the most of soft material. She and Feldman, best known for Broadway’s Catch me if You Can, are fine together but it just doesn’t work as well as it could have. They get fine supporting performances but again, from people who have given stronger performances elsewhere.
The movie, out only on Blu-ray and Digital HD, seems fine in its 1080p/AVC-encoded video transfer. The daytime and nighttime sequences are equally clear with good color. It pairs well with the DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround track. Neither is top of the line but perfectly serves this film.
There are a handful of Special Features, none particularly special. We have A Little Wrong: Making No Hard Feelings (6:00), A Motley Crew: Meet the Characters (7:00); and Outtakes & Bloopers (4:00).