Real-life spouses Dave Franco & Alison Brie collaborate again in the romantic comedy Somebody I Used To Know from Amazon Studios. Franco directs the film from a script he co-wrote with Brie, who also toplines the film.
Workaholic TV producer Ally (Alison Brie) is on top of the world. Sweet confections are the basis for the hit reality show Dessert Island, where strangers form romantic bonds. By opening the film with a joke, Brie shows her charm and emphasizes the triviality of the show while interviewing a contestant.
However, Ally faces a major professional setback when her latest show receives a cancellation notice. The turn of events sends her running to the comforts of her hometown of Leavenworth, Washington. She quickly learns that her mother, Libby (Julie Haggerty), is enjoying sexual liberation. To take her mind off some of the problems she is facing, she ventures to the local watering hole, where she runs into her old friend Benny (Danny Pudi).
A few days later, she meets the man who was her first love Sean (Jay Ellis), and they have some catching up to do. They spend a whirlwind day and night reminiscing, and Ally starts to question everything about the person she's become. After discovering that Sean is getting married to Cassidy (Kiersey Clemons), who has such confidence and creative conviction that reminds her of the person she once was, things only get more confusing.
On paper, Somebody I Used To Know reads like a remake of the Julia Roberts 1997 classic, My Best Friends Wedding. While some of the tropes are there, Franco and Brie play with the audience by making a meta-reference that is eloquently delivered by Kiersey Clemons' character. Brie is a joy to watch in the film and eludes movie star charisma.
The film is about strengthening the traits that made you successful in the past. Although Ally may have sinister intentions, her character also does not turn the cheek about who she is. The arc given to the character is organic and effective. Surprisingly, I wasn't rooting for Sean and Ally to get together, which is where the film succeeds.
The supporting cast also delivers decent work, with Jay Ellis reestablishing himself after being wasted in the smash hit Top Gun: Maverick. Ellis stands out, providing an emotional performance as a man stuck between two worlds and trying to find a balance. Clemons is a scene-stealer with her warmth and charm. While Osmont, Pudi and
Haggerty provides some of the comedy's most humorous moments. Finally, the chemistry between Ellis and Brie is palpable and never cringy. While it may not reach iconic status, Somebody I Used To Know is another winner from husband-wife team Franco and Brie. The two manage to create a movie that is both funny and touching.
Final Grade: B
Somebody I Used To Know is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video now