Laggies
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In recent years, the aimless twenty-something (or even thirty-something) man-child has become a comedy staple. Actors like Seth Rogen, for instance, have built successful careers on playing the perpetual teenager. But, as director Lynn Shelton’s latest comedy, Laggies, suggests, it isn’t just the guys who have a hard time growing up.

Laggies stars Keira Knightley as Megan Birch, a young woman who’s spent her twenties avoiding adulthood and responsibility. When her long-time boyfriend, Anthony (Mark Webber), attempts to propose, she decides that she needs some time away to think about her life and her future. But instead of heading to the week-long life seminar that she claims to be attending, she ends up spending the week with her new friend, Annika (Chloë Grace Moretz), a troubled teen who lives with her beleaguered single dad, Craig (Sam Rockwell). And as Megan helps Annika deal with her teenage problems, she’s forced to face her own issues, too.

  
 
You don’t have to be a troubled teen or an immature twenty-something to relate to this coming-of-age story—because it’s not just about growing up. It’s about being an active participant in your own life and taking charge of where you’re headed—even if that means making some difficult decisions along the way. It’s about accepting your past and learning to move on—a lesson that all three of the film’s main characters have to learn along the way.

Knightley’s Megan is a different kind of slacker. She’s a smart young woman with multiple degrees. Her high school friends all have husbands and children and successful careers. Yet she just can’t seem to figure out where she fits. And despite her inability to settle down—despite her sudden need to run away and be a teenager again—Knightley’s easy-going yet sincere performance makes her charming and generally relatable.

And it’s a good thing that the character is so lovable, too—because, if she weren’t, Knightley’s atrocious attempt at an American accent may have ruined the entire film. Her self-conscious way of speaking is definitely a distraction—especially in the beginning—but once you get into the story, you’ll (mostly) be able to overlook it.

Of course, it helps that she’s surrounded by such a wonderful supporting cast. Moretz gives an equally sincere performance as the teenager who’s trying to figure out boys, her future, and the mother who abandoned her. And Rockwell is as hilarious as ever as her straight-talking dad. Together, they make the kind of lovably dysfunctional trio that you’ll enjoy growing up with.

Messy but real, earnest yet entertaining, Laggies is a simply charming comedy about growing up and getting on with your life. Whether you’re an aimless twenty-something or a world-weary adult, you’re sure to appreciate its heart and humor.


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