Coming to theatres this Friday from directors Nat Faxon and Jim Rash comes the journey for a young man who is trying to find THE WAY, WAY BACK.
This film tells the story of Duncan (Liam James), a quiet young man who lives with his mother Pam (Toni Collette) after a divorce. Now, Pam is with Trent (Steve Carell), a single father who wants to make a new family but Duncan just isn’t having it.
In an effort to have a family summer together, Trent brings them all to his family’s summerhouse on the beach. Within moments neighbor Betty (Allison Janney) comes running out with all the latest gossip and to meet Pam for the first time.
Betty also has a daughter Susanna (Anna Sophia Robb) and Duncan notices right away but doesn’t know how to talk to her. Trent also has his friends Kip (Rob Corddry) and Joan (Amanda Peet) over to meet Pam and have a little adult time.
Trying to stay away from his mother and Trent, Duncan ends up at the local water park and meets Owen (Sam Rockwell) who takes a liking to the boy immediately. Quickly offering him a job at Water Wizz, Duncan begins to open up and makes a name for himself with the locals. Now, the days include being around people who treat him with dignity, and a little fun.
Duncan begins to understand that he needs to find himself in order to be himself!
FINAL WORD: James is fantastic as Duncan. Watching this young man go from car-flower to da man is so much fun. There is something beautiful about a film that takes its time and allows a character to grow before your eyes. To me that is what makes a film memorable and James has done it with this character.
Rockwell had me rolling with laughter. The things he was saying and the speed at which he was saying them truly rattled the brain but totally in a good way. I’ve always enjoyed this actor and am always amazed at the roles he chooses. This is another winner and audiences will totally fall for his shenanigans!
Collette as Pam is ridiculous as a woman who gets out of one relationship and into another questionable one. Why is this ridiculous? Because secretly we have all been there, male or female, at one time or another so it’s easy to peg her instantly.
Peet as Joan and Corddry as Kip make me completely insane. Perhaps because I know a couple just like them. Just the fakeness and sub-plotting is just yucky. Well done to both these actors.
This is a fantastic role for Carell because it is so unexpected. He is a total douchebag and I mean that in the most affectionate way Steve! It was just amazing to watch this character come from a dark place if you will. Expecting the usual warm fuzzies from this actor just took a moment to adjust.
Janney is frakken hilarious. Her outlook on life and her way of speaking just keeps the audience going full tilt. Robb character takes James under her wing and is surprised when Duncan learns to fly pretty fast.
Other cast include: Maya Rudolph as Kaitlin, Zoe Levin as Steph, Ava Deluca-Verley as Katy, Robert Capron as Kyle, Nat Faxon as Roddy, River Alexander as Peter and Jim Rash as Lewis.
TUBS OF POPCORN: I give THE WAY, WAY BACK four and a half tubs of popcorn out of five. I totally had an amazing time watching this film. As it begins with such tension and there isn’t anything hidden in that. Every character is eyeballing the other and the audience is in on it.
But as everyone goes there way it is Duncan who not only becomes aware of what he can be, but really calls on those around him to do the same. When he does confront the problems I am a cheerleader in the theatre seat! Rockwell and James are amazing together and I truly couldn’t get enough of them together.
The script is fun, funny, challenging and endearing which means I’ll be seeing THE WAY, WAY BACK again!
In the end – growing up has never been easy!
For more information on films and television visit Movie Maven.