ByKevin Kelly, writer at
Kevin Kelly

The Wayside is a series of articles on movies that came and went without much of a fuss. They’re not exactly Oscar contenders, but just enjoyable movies.

Celeste & Jesse Forever (2012) – Director: Lee Toland Krieger – Starring: Rashida Jones, Andy Samberg

The romcom is a divisive genre of comedy. You either love bawling your eyes out at the eventual romantic embrace at the end or you hate the inane inevitability of the eventual romantic embrace at the end. I fall into the latter division.

Then I watched Celeste & Jesse Forever. It is dubbed a romcom, but maybe calling it a romdramedy would be more appropriate. I just made that word up.

It is superbly different from other movies I’ve seen in this genre and from all the movies I haven’t seen in this genre but can only assume what will happen in the end.

Celeste is a “trend analyser” running her own company. Jesse is an artist therefore he’s unemployed. They’re childhood sweethearts who marry young and divorce quickly. There’s still a spark between them though, and the movie follows them as they try to figure out whether to move on or not. The ups and downs we follow them through range from hilarious to gut wrenching.

The one thing that really struck me with this movie was the high calibre of the performances. Rashida Jones is magnificent. She completely owns the movie. I was enthralled throughout it just to follow her along, experience every decision and thought she made.

Andy Samberg showed he’s not just the smart-talking doofus type; he’s also the smart-talking quirky type and an able leading man in a movie like this.

Elijah Wood plays Celeste’s business partner Scott, and steals the show in every scene he’s in. He has come a long way from The Shire. The world mainly knows him for that role, but he’s a fine character actor. Just watch this movie for proof.

This movie is the perfect example of the kind of movie The Wayside is about. It’s a fantastic film, but never had the support or warrant to be a huge international hit. But those who have seen it, if they’re anything like me, will cherish it.


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