Adoption dramedy falls flat; swearing, drug use, some sex.
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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Unexpected is an overwrought dramedy about a couple (Anna Camp and Joseph Mazzello) dealing with infertility who begin to consider adoption. A young couple kiss, with a woman straddling a man. She initiates sex, and they decide to use plastic food wrap when the man doesn't have a condom (it doesn't work). There's additional sex-related dialogue, as well as infrequent use of language including "s--t," "bitch," "damn," "oh God," and "Jesus." Characters get high after unknowingly eating cookies baked with pot. A character takes Zoloft, and his dose is continually increased; there are also verbal references to other drugs. A character dies on the operating table from a massive heart attack, characters scream at each other and fight, and a man tries to hang himself with a rope (he's saved). A man bashes down a wooden railing with a sledgehammer.
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What's the Story?
In UNEXPECTED, Amy (Anna Camp) and Bob (Joseph Mazzello) have been unsuccessfully trying to have a baby, and Bob feels stuck in his job as a music critic. Needing a change, they buy a fixer-upper country house and adopt a pet rabbit. That leads to a flock of ducks and turkeys as well, but these pets don't make up for Amy's desire to have a baby. The couple hires a handyman, Rupert (Neil Flynn), whose underachieving son, Gerard (Nash Grier), is dating a woman named Shirlee (Ryann Shane). When Shirlee ends up pregnant, Amy gets the idea to adopt the baby, but Bob -- who has started going to therapy and taking Zoloft -- doesn't like the idea. Then, during a therapy session, Bob has a breakthrough and begins to eagerly await fatherhood. Unfortunately, life has other plans.
Is It Any Good?
Despite likable performances, this dramedy ultimately disappoints, feeling irreparably split between its comedy sequences -- which always feel a bit off -- and its overwrought dramatic bits. Some of the humor in Unexpected feels like it ought to have hit big, including Bob's quirky therapy sessions, his brief foray into reviewing World Music, Amy binging on fruit, a sequence involving pot-loaded cookies, and a rabbit's path of destruction, but it all lands soft, with nary a chuckle. On the other hand, the tricky material involving Bob and Amy's infertility and their arguments over adoption wobble between hysterical (Camp, of the Pitch Perfect movies, gets to scream many, many times here) and uncomfortable without being especially revealing. Camp is bright and plucky, even while her character spins a bit wild, and Mazzello is a sweet everyman, but it's Flynn who comes the closest to getting laughs thanks to the wry, grumpy persona he developed in Scrubs. But Unexpected even manages to dull that cutting edge.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about how Unexpected handles sex. What's shown and not shown? What values are imparted?
How does the movie approach the idea of adoption? Do you agree with the position it takes or argues for?
How does the movie depict violence? Was it upsetting? Comical? Do you consider shouting, screaming, and arguing to be violent? Why, or why not?
How is drug use portrayed? Is it glamorized? Are there consequences? Why does that matter?
How is depression depicted here? What are some ways to handle depression in real life?
- On DVD or streaming: February 1, 2023
- Cast: Anna Camp, Joseph Mazzello, Neil Flynn
- Director: David Hunt
- Studio: Blue Fox Entertainment
- Genre: Comedy
- Run time: 108 minutes
- MPAA rating: NR
- Last updated: February 17, 2023
Our Editors Recommend
Mature dramedy about infertility has lots of sex, cursing.
Brilliant teen-pregnancy comedy, but iffy for kids.
Heartwarming family dramedy has some mature moments.
Away We Go
Parent-to-be drama meanders but wraps up poignantly.
SNL gals deliver hilarious comedy for teens+.
For kids who love comedy and drama
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