A Simple Favor – Review

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Based on the novel of the same name, A Simple Favor is a thriller film about a small town blogger who tries to uncover the mystery surrounding her rich, best friend’s disappearance.

Leading the cast of A Simple Favor are Anna Kendrick and Blake Lively. Anna plays the quirky, single mother, Stephanie. She does a good job of being the viewers insight into the world. She starts out as fairly normal, but as things progress, she keeps pushing her limits and she gets increasingly more bold, determined and forthright. Anna’s infectious smile filled performance makes the character incredibly likeable and relatable too.

Meanwhile, Blake Lively plays the rich, snobby best friend, who seemingly cares for nobody but herself and doesn’t have any inhibitions. Despite the fact that she says and does some horrible things, Blake manages to make the character funny and understanding. It’s impressive, considering this is a character that could come across as excessive and perhaps even cartoonish in the wrong hands.

The story of A Simple Favor is a fun one. Two parents with very different backgrounds and lifestyles become friends. Abruptly, the rich one goes missing, leaving Anna’s character with her son and husband. There are twists, turns, surprises and revelations throughout. This helps keep the film interesting and entertaining, even if some of the events are little predictable and sometimes hard to believe.

This is a Paul Feig film. Paul is probably best known for his work on comedies such as Bridesmaids, Ghostbusters and Spy. Despite being a thriller with serious themes and moments, Paul manages to make A Simple Favor very funny at times. The humour never feels out of place, with a single moment towards the end of the film being the only exception. The humour makes what could’ve been a tonally dry and dull film, fun and enjoyable. Unlike some of Paul’s work in comedy, the jokes here often come across as real and believable too. They never seem too excessive or outlandish.

The costumes of the film are also a standout element. Blake is constantly seen wearing some extravagant, stylish outfits that compliment her character perfectly. Even the more mundane and casual outfits of Anna Kendrick are great because they too help establish her character as a normal, single mom.

A Simple Favor is a highly enjoyable, surprisingly funny thriller. It hasan enticing narrative that’s anchored by two great lead performances. The film isn’t always unique or believable, but it does a good job of constantly being interesting.

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Grant Burton
Writer of stuff Watcher of film Player of games Fan of Star Wars Presenter on YouTube MA: Film Theory and Practice BA: Film and Television Studies