Adventureland ★★★★

I think I’ve watched 10+ minutes of this like 15 times over the last couple months but this was from the start enough to count for one.

I don’t know what it says that I keep watching it or anything in parts over more deliberate selection of something else off some larger list. I tend to view movies on cable like radio and sometimes I just wanna flip until I hit something - I don’t wanna start anything, just bring me in at some point and let me go. Where the goods can graduate to rewatchables, where the studio failures and mediocrities of yore can become so weirdly compelling that you have to re-evaluate whether they’re just good.

Adventureland seems to have the right mix of familiar faces, good tunes, easy vibe, and honestly probably some sort of vestigial connection to watching it on HBOs nearly a decade ago and whatever was going on nearly a decade ago by proxy.

The calculus for what makes some summer coming of age with quirky crew movies click and the others taste like soap is unclear, but I guess you got the right specificity in execution here, Eisenberg pleasant, not yet at schtick, not taking anything off the table and happy to play straight man. The needle drops alternate between suspiciously hip but good enough to let slide and the kind of 80s hits that are used purposefully enough to overcome ubiquity elsewhere and provide the only background this 1987 could have.

Maybe I’m just drawn to anything episodic and known at this stage of things. Maybe it’s some ability of movies to be overlooked by you for however long and then emerge as some sort of comfort that you can’t quite pin down but do appreciate. And that averages to 4 stars