Wednesday, January 28, 2015


Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

MOVIE WEEKEND decided to move itself to Wednesday because it heard that some of you are snowed in. Today we feature The Spectacular Now (2013, Rated R, Available On DVD).

Sutter Keely (Miles Teller) lives in the moment. Why think about the future when he just wants to enjoy today? He hides his true feelings behind his gregarious personality and a flask, unless he has a can of beer in his hand. One morning he wakes up on someone's lawn only to meet Aimee Finicky (Shailene Woodley). She knows who Sutter is, and explains they go to the same high school.

Sutter and Aimee start dating. Sutter even offers her a drunken invitation to the prom--a promise he thinks he won't keep, a promise she tells him he doesn't have to keep, but he does. Soon Sutter gives Aimee her own flask, and she drinks the Kool-Aid, though she's not forced to do so.

I praised Shailene Woodley's performance in The Fault In Our Stars (click HERE to read the review), and I have nothing but praise for her here. I also like Miles Teller. Woodley and Teller are naturals. The Spectacular Now is a coming of age movie, and Sutter has a lot of growing up to do. It's a tribute to the screenwriter, director, and Miles Teller that I don't simply dismiss him as a jerk.

This movie is worth watching to see these performances. Miles Teller now stars in Whiplash, which is nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture. J. K. Simmons is considered a shoe-in (I know you think it's shoo-in, but check the etymology) for Best Supporting Actor, and already won a Golden Globe.

This movie is not for children. If you decide to watch it with your teens, be prepared to discuss the choices that Aimee and Sutter make. According to online sources, the conclusion of the movie is quite different from that of the Young Adult novel on which it's based.

The Spectacular Now earns The Janie Junebug Seal of Highest Approval.

Why shovel snow when you can watch movies? Happy Viewing!

Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug


  1. No snow here - just lots of cold air, and some wind. Movie sounds good to me. Thank you. :)

  2. Shailene Woodly is a wonderful actress. I think she's very underrated for the show that she can put on. There are a lot of talented actresses out there but she seems to show the emotion better than so many seasoned actresses.

  3. I've been wanting to see this movie--obviously not so much that I'll actively seek it out--it's great to hear that it's a good watch. Not sure about anyone else, but I'd like it if you added to this feature a "where I saw it" line, like, did you rent it from Redbox or ITunes, did you stream it on Netflix or Amazon, or did you go to a theater? Just a suggestion.

  4. I agree that she's a good actress, and he did a good job, too. I wasn't taken with this movie like some, but I thought it was alright. (Meaning I was glad I watched but wouldn't go out of my way to see it again or to push Boyfriend to watch)

  5. Hi, Janie Junebug! Long time no see. :)

    The Spectacular Now looks like a good one. I watched the trailer and agree with you that Woodley and Teller are naturals with loads of chemistry between them. I can understand how the movie "hits you like a shot in the heart."

    I found the following piece of trivia published on IMDB.

    << At one point during preproduction, the script began to change. Shailene Woodley was worried that the new rewrites would make the story less honest, and at one point even called Miles Teller to tell him that she was thinking of dropping out. Teller managed to convince her to stay on the movie, and the rewrites never happened. >>

    It's nice to find a young actor with artistic integrity.

    Thank you for the review, Janie. If I get snowed in this weekend, this is the movie I intend to watch!

  6. I haven't seen this but it looks like something I'd like. Yesterday - being snowed in - I did watch a bunch of episodes of Helix, which was fun, but not spectacular.

  7. I really liked that movie. Saw it twice before sending it back. I ended up buying Boyhood. I hope it wins something.

  8. One never knows what to expect in the movie, if you have read the book first. I think I'd like this one, so may rent it this weekend. Thanks, Janie!

  9. Hi Janie!! Sounds like some great acting abounds in this movie. I will add it to my must-watch list!

  10. Usually don't watch teen/coming of age movies, but I might have to give it a go. :)

  11. "Why shovel snow when you can watch movies?"
    Because I need somewhere to walk. (lol)

  12. So nice of you to think of all the folks that are snowed in!

    (I may have another picture book manuscript for you to edit, soon!)

  13. I'd much rather watch a movie than shovel snow, not that we have any here in Portland.

  14. I love seeing unknown actors step up to the plate.

  15. Sounds like a good movie filled with adult themes that many kids must face

  16. Thanks for the review. I love the 'why shovel snow when you can watch movies.' Perfect:)


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