5.6/10
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24 user 41 critic

Why Stop Now? (2012)

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2:16 | Trailer
When a college piano prodigy tries to check his mother into rehab, he is taken hostage by her drug dealer and swept along on a wild adventure.

Writers:

Phil Dorling (written for the screen by), Ron Nyswaner (written for the screen by) | 2 more credits »
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jesse Eisenberg ... Eli Bloom
Melissa Leo ... Penny Bloom
Tracy Morgan ... Sprinkles
Emma Rayne Lyle ... Nicole Bloom
Sarah Ramos ... Chloe
Isiah Whitlock Jr. ... Black
Stephanie March ... Trish
Paul Calderon ... Eduardo
Neal Huff ... Dave Epstein
Jayce Bartok ... Nurse Mike
Harper Dill Harper Dill ... Lucy
Tanya Wright ... Lisa
Marilyn Berry Marilyn Berry ... Charlene
Luna Catarevas Luna Catarevas ... Marina
Susan Barnes Susan Barnes ... Jennifer Michaels
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Storyline

The story of Eli Smith (Jesse Eisenberg), a piano prodigy, dealing with his troubled mother, Penny (Melissa Leo), and enlisting help from a hapless drug dealer, Sprinkles (Tracy Morgan), on the day he has an audition for a prestigious music program. Events spiral comically out of control as this gang of misfits faces the mistakes of the past, the challenges of the future, and the possibilities of love. Written by ICM Press Release

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A funny thing happened on the way to rehab.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language throughout, and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

17 August 2012 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Predisposed See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,641, 19 August 2012

Gross USA:

$2,432

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,432
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Tracy Morgan uses a cane in this film, although it was made several years before his debilitating accident. See more »

Goofs

When he's with Chloe after the Revolutionary War re-enactment, the bandages are gone from Eli's right hand, and there is no indication of any injury whatsoever. He's wearing the bandages again, though, at the audition the next day. See more »

Quotes

Black: Respect's gone out the window these days.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Full of comedic mishaps but strikes a decent balance of drama and comedy
8 July 2012 | by napierslogsSee all my reviews

"Why Stop Now" asks the question how far would you go to get into rehab? Eli (Jesse Eisenberg) is a smart kid, a piano prodigy, and is desperate to get his mother into rehab. His mother (Melissa Leo) is an annoying, high-strung coke-addict who has to go to rehab now or else Eli will never get to live his own life. The various plot descriptions available all get the rehab misunderstanding wrong, but it doesn't matter, it's ridiculous either way.

Presumably a comedy, the movie goes to great lengths to create a story full of comedic mishaps. Most of them, especially the rehab misunderstanding, aren't funny enough and belong in a worse movie. Because the thing is this movie could be more aptly described as a bittersweet drama-comedy and the travails that Eli has to go through are actually pretty touching.

Jesse Eisenberg is a really good actor. Prior to "The Social Network" (2010), I didn't really believe he was good (probably because of unfair superficial assumptions placed on him), but he may very well have mastered the drama-comedy balance. The script goes to extremes in manufacturing obstacles and misplaced hilarity. Melissa Leo takes on those extremes with her high-pitched self-righteous prattle and we wish she was locked in rehab at the very beginning. Tracy Morgan, surprisingly, plays his role more subdued than he has probably ever been before and the result is a drug dealer that doesn't produce any laughs.

Eisenberg is able to make a couple of scenes very funny. In one, he acts as a Spanish translator for one drug dealer to another and finds an amusing balance between his book smarts and street smarts. In a later scene, he explains the difference between a pain in the ass and a pretentious pain in the ass to two high-strung screaming sisters. I'm thankful when he raises his voice to get them to shut-up.

The mostly classical music score provides an interesting juxtaposition to the drug-fuelled comedy, but I'm not sure who "Why Stop Now" is supposed to appeal to. It doesn't have the same energy and comedy that popular releases "Horrible Bosses" and "21 Jump Street" have. But the bittersweet journey and the accomplishments by one actor in particular makes this a somewhat enjoyable and, thankfully, short ride.


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