A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Apartment Troubles is an independent comedy about two artistic best friends/roommates who don't have enough income to bother paying their electricity bill -- or rent. There's some strong language ("f--k," "s--t," "a--hole," "bitch"), drinking by adults (a couple to the point of drunkenness), prescription drug use, and some mild fighting. An older married woman keeps hitting on/trying to kiss a younger woman who isn't interested in her. The young women -- who are affectionate and share a bed, though their relationship isn't sexual -- don't seem to have a job or worry about how to live up to their responsibilities.
What's the story?
APARTMENT TROUBLES follows unemployed artists Nicole (Jess Weixler) and Olivia (Jennifer Prediger), who live in an illegal Manhattan sublet and can't be bothered to pay either the electric bill or the rent. When their landlord (Jeffrey Tambor) gives them an ultimatum, Nicole comes up with a plan to get away from their titular problems: use her rich father's company jet to fly to Los Angeles and stay with her beloved Aunt Kimberley (Megan Mullally), a producer and judge on a popular reality talent show. Aunt Kimberley welcomes the women to her home and begins to subtly -- and later overtly -- make passes at Olivia.
Is it any good?
This movie is neither funny nor memorable. The popularity of TV shows like Girls and Broad City makes it clear that there's an audience ready and willing to watch young, wandering hipsters humorously fumble their way through adulthood -- but the two women at the heart of this film (they're not only the stars but also the co-writers and directors) wrote the wrong material to highlight their talents. The actresses' characters are so unlikable and unrelatable that it's painful to watch.
Even usually amusing actors fall flat in this movie. Will Forte pops up as a man who offers Nicole and Olivia a ride from the airport to Aunt Kimberley's house, except he quickly goes from Good Samaritan to high and stalkerish. He's cringe-worthy and surprisingly humorless considering his laugh-out-loud performances in other comedies, like The Last Man on Earth and Saturday Night Live. By the time Nicole and Olivia present their multimedia spoken-word performance as an audition for Kimberley's reality show, the audience, like the judges, will wonder when the audition -- and the movie itself -- will end.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about who this movie is intended to appeal to. What's it's target audience? How can you tell?
Do you think Nicole and Olivia can be considered role models? Why or why not? Is their story believable?
How is the reality show in the movie reminiscent of real televised talent shows? What do you think the filmmakers are trying to say about them?
Talk about the popularity of actor-writer-directors making their own movies. What's the appeal to young performers to do it all?
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