Best Man Down (2012)
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Set mainly in the fairly bleak backdrop of Minnesota, this movie is engaging and thoughtful with a satisfying and believable resolution.
This appears to be the first movie directed and written by Ted Koland, and I hope he does more.
Lastly, to save you the time...
The track that plays at the end of the movie is Come Back To Us by Release The Sunbird. It's a perfect song to showcase the feeling the movie gives you at the end.
You try making it through this movie without getting misty. These are raw well developed characters, and they are leading you with each step with their full open expressions, and those running gags.
If you were a fan of Juno you will fall off your chair to watch this one again.
Best Man Down is an unlikely tale when the Best Man of Scott & Kristin's (played by Long and Weixler) marriage, Lumpy (Labine) dies just after the reception has ended. Lumpy has not many friends and the newly wed couple are now arranging the funeral in Minnesota instead on going on their honeymoon. During all this, they find out of that Lumpy had another one friend called Ramsey (Timlin) in Minnesota who turns out to be a 15 yr old girl studying in high school.
Who is Ramsey? How does she know Lumpy? What was her relationship with Lumpy? And lots of other questions bothers the newly wed couple and especially Scott who wonders did he really know Lumpy whom he met in high school.
Best Man Down works because of its unusual story and simplistic screenplay. Its a slow film and one needs a bit of patience in the beginning. But it grows over you as it progresses and the reason being the writers make Lumpy and Ramsey's relationship a suspense.
Even in the scenes where the couple fight or Ramsey fights with her mother, the writers and directors keep the tone low and it never goes over the top.
The casting is perfect. Long and Weixler are perfect as the newly wed couple who are trying to make their marriage work after Lumpy's death. Labine is effective in his short role as Lumpy and special mention to Shelly Long who plays Kristin's mother. Her character gets the smile on our faces in this serious film with her out of place dialogues.
However, the star of the this film is Timlin. I have seen Timlin in Californication before and I was not sure what kind of actress she is . After watching this film, I can easily say that she is a fine actress in the making. Timlin is in her early 20s but portrays the 15 yr old Ramsey with ease. Her character longs to be loved and cared and you feel for her. The scene where she comes to know about Lumpy's death is brilliant. She initially doesn't react much to the surprise of the couple but when alone, she breaks down.
I hope she gets better films to do in the future because there is talent in her to be explored.
I wonder how this film was missed by the awards in US. This is under rated romance classic because there is no physical love...just unspoken love between two people. This film deserved a couple of nominations of its screenplay.
Fantastic cast. Justin Long and Jess Weixler make a great team. It was nice to see another movie with Tyler Labine, he seems like a such a fun, lovable guy and what a great actor! If you're hesitant, definitely go for it. I give it a solid 8/10.
one of the very best movies i have ever watched. the best.
Best Man Down is a story on at least three levels dealing with enduring friendship,loyalty and new beginnings. Justin Long and Jess Weixler are great as newly weds in the midst of a tragedy.
Yet,their lives take a turn for the better when they hook up with the mysterious friend, Addison Timlin, of their dearly departed best man...Once again Timlin shows the range she has. However,I wonder when the film was actually made.She's 22 but plays and looks like the 15 year old she's suppose to be. All-in-all a warm and enjoyable film.
The cast was so good, I loved everyone's performances. But in the opening, it looked like a mindless comedy with dumb characters. Only while the film progress, it slowly developed many awesome plots and I was totally impressed with it, especially for the way it ended. Yep, it concluded on a high note compared to the ordinary initiation. I think credit should go the writer-come-director, as well as the actors.
It was a two layered narration that sets in two different cities where one of it was a flashback, but both of them meets during the middle. So what comes later was the best segment. The second half is what made this film a better product. This is not an extraordinary film, but for a small project and its not so popular cast, it really excelled my expectation.
Well maintained suspense, and I don't think anybody could guess them out that easily. Till the final scene, it'll keep you alive, especially if you like melodrama you'll surely enjoy it better than others. Lately Justin Long has been doing some of the interesting small-scale films and this is one of them that you should try it if you're a film fanatic without barriers in viewing any category films.
it's not easy to confine the movie into a specific genre, but i can say that it's a soft spoken movie with significant power to remind you that even though life is often truly messed up, and people are usually not who you think they are... sometimes it's exactly the way things are supposed to be.
This is a well shot film with interesting characters and a nice sharp script. It contains a nice mix of humour and a number of quite sad moments. The cast is mainly excellent especially from Justin Long and Jess Weixler who have a great chemistry as the young couple. Tyler Labine is very charismatic as the Best Man.
Although maybe a bit far fetched this is nevertheless a really enjoyable drama that is always entertaining. The only downsides to me was the relationship between Ramsey and her mother which never quite rang true and the fact that the film had to tie up all the loose ends.
This is a gem of a film that is well worth seeking out for fans of independent drama.
All we get from movies now is to much violence, and not enough thought provoking writing.
Everyone should see this movie. There is something for everyone.
The acting was superb. I especially liked Addison in this role, and hope to see her in many more.
Only thing on the bad side that I will say, is it should have been longer. I also wished we had watched this instead of the Super Bowl. I'm a huge football fan so that says it all. lol
Emotional comedy drama film about a newlywed couple who has to deal with their best man suddenly dropping dead on their wedding night. The movie stars Justin Long and Jess Weixler as the newlyweds and Tyler Labine as Long's best man. It also co-stars Addison Timlin, Shelley Long and Frances O'Connor. The film was written and directed by Ted Koland (making his feature film directorial and writing debut). I didn't think the movie was really that funny but I did like the characters and drama they're involved in. It's also filled with decent to good performances and it's nice to see Long (Justin Long, not Shelley) taking on more serious roles (he's good at them too).
Long plays Scott and Weixler plays Kristin, the two are getting married as the film begins. Labine plays Scott's best man Lumpy. Scott and Lumpy have grown apart over recent years but Lumpy has generously offered to pay for the financially strapped couple's honeymoon. Kristin is unaware of this and isn't happy with Lumpy being Scott's best man; as he's an obnoxious drunk who gets wasted at their wedding. He also drops dead that night, outside the hotel the wedding party is staying at, and Scott and Kristin have to postpone their honeymoon in order to deal with his funeral (Kristin is not happy about that either). While preparing for the funeral they find out there's a lot about Lumpy they didn't know, including a relationship he had with a 15-year-old girl named Ramsey (Timlin).
Long is great in the film and Labine (like always) is extremely lovable and energetic. Weixler is good as well, she tends to play characters that are somewhat hard to like (at least at first) but she's definitely a decent actress. It's Timlin that steals the movie though. She's 21 but she definitely looks 15 in this film and her character is the most relatable and sympathetic. Like I said the drama in the film definitely works, it's a little bit of a downer but it's also inspiring and attempts to make you cherish life a little more. Not as funny as the title and cast suggests but it definitely is worth watching.
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Ted Koland's Best Man Down introduces this nightmare scenario, tying together new beginnings and untimely ends in a way that's both comical and emotionally revealing. There's sometimes a difference between being someone's "Best Man" and oldest friend, and Koland explores a friendship that is strong, but hasn't been revisited for a brief period of time. Life can change in a heartbeat, even at the happiest of occasions.
Scott (Justin Long) and Kristin (Jess Weixler) have waited their whole lives for a happy wedding ceremony, choosing the destination route in Arizona. Among their friends and family is Scott's Best Man "Lumpy" (Tyler Labine), who proves to be taking full advantage of the open bar. Guzzling libations and stumbling about the wedding ceremony, Scott is eventually forced to cut his best friend off and send him to bed. It's here where Lumpy continues his buffoonery, but after injuring himself and ending up locked out of the hotel, he starts stumbling around the desert landscape, and drops dead. Awaking to the horrible news, Scott is forced to cancel his extravagant honeymoon to ensure Lumpy gets a proper funeral, dragging his new wife back to Minneapolis instead of a sunny beach - a choice that turns into a period of discovery and reflection for all parties involved.
Ted Koland does so much right to ensure Lumpy's death never loses importance, and that's why Best Man Down works so well. While the title may sound like some silly friendship comedy, Koland's script does much more than just send Scott and Kristin on some wild goose chase while delving into Lumpy's past, instead revealing strong themes surrounding mortality, true friendship, and happiness. Our perception of Lumpy changes dramatically as his drunken foolishness is explained and a much more somber situation is revealed, as we learn to love Lumpy in death.
It's Labine and Long who make Lumpy's life so meaningful, both on different levels. Labine obviously portrays Lumpy's drunken wedding night antics, establishing the bad, but then through the magic of flashbacks, it's Labine who wins us over with charming sweetness. Easily assuming Lumpy's untimely end was brought about by partying too hard, falling victim to some type of drugs, or any other life ruining devices, Labine's ongoing establishment of a loving, caring Lumpy reverses the intoxicated spell originally put on our doomed character.
Long, on the other hand, has to show the impact Lumpy's death has on his supposed best friend, even though Scott quickly begins to realize he's not exactly sure who his Best Man turned into. More importantly, Scott begins to realize that life could end at any moment, and starts to make quickfire decisions, backing his reasoning with comments like, "That's what Lumpy would have done." Scott's struggles with his new marriage, Lumpy's death, and crumby job all culminate in a romantically touching gesture honoring Best Man Down's most critical character.
It's Lumpy's relationship with a girl named Ramsey (Addison Timlin) that completes the proper tonal confusion though, as the young girl presents another bit of plot trickery that ultimately adds another dimension to Lumpy. Being that Labine dies in the opening moments of Best Man Down, we rely on all the other characters to personify Lumpy, and Timlin's ambiguous role becomes the most important piece to this puzzle.
Best Man Down succeeds in balancing emotional drama and lighthearted comedy, considering the borderline morbid topic, but does so in a way that's respectful, positively focused, and rewarding. Such a triumph is in large part thanks to our leading men, Justin Long and Tyler Labine, but those characters wouldn't have been possible without proper guidance and scripting from first time director Ted Koland, who avoids the pitfalls of creating a story about death that's either distractingly comical or depressingly dark. For lack of a better term - it's a beautiful, tonal marriage.