Rated R for sexual content including dialogue, language throughout, some drug use and brief nudity, 100 minutes
Cast the best thing about the witty "Going the Distance"
Sometimes long-distance romance works, sometimes it doesn't. The same could be said for the new Drew Barrymore-Justin Long romantic comedy, some it works, some it doesn't. Profane, witty and filled with some good one-liners and a decent cast, "Going the Distance" is an above-average rom com with an otherwise predictable script that nearly lets its overly-charming supporting cast take over.
Drew is Erin, a Southern Cali girl working as an intern at a New York City newspaper. She bumps into New Yorker Garrett (Long), a music promoter who hates his job, while playing the video game Centipede at a bar. They fall in love, but Erin has to go back to Stanford after the summer is up and the two forge a long-distance relationship. The two desperately want to be with each other but the jobs are scarce on both coasts, and they must ultimately make the tough decision of moving or breaking up.
Fun but slight, you'll be "Going the Distance" only because of the appeal of the handsome leads, who need more screen time together. The film takes too long decide who's doing what, but there are a handful of amusing moments along the way. Drew and Justin make for a cute pairing given their real-life relationship though you wish they had more interplay, and they're regularly upstaged by several strong supporting characters. The film's profane tone, along with plenty of sex and drugs, is a little different for the seemingly clean cut Drew and Justin, but that works to help the somewhat slack script.
As Garrett's somewhat dense but one-liner filled pals, "Saturday Night Live's" Jason Sudeikis and "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia's" Charlie Day have the most fun in the movie, the latter of whom has the breakout potential of the next Zach Galifianakis. The scruffy roommate regularly listens in to his buddy's amorous adventures, keeps the door open while pooping and inadverdantly shaves his moustache resembling an infamous German dictator. Just as good is Christina Applegate as Erin's protective, OCD sister who scrubs her house down after her sister's sexual adventures and gains pleasure from dry-humping.
"Going the Distance" goes back and forth too much and in the end there's not much there, but the charming appeal of the leads make something this predictable seem so effortless. This is one long-distance relationship, that in spite of its flaws, is worth it. Recommended mainly for Drew and rom com lovers.