When the trailer was released for this homegrown comedy it quickly became my "go-to" when I needed a laugh. But the more I watched it, the more I worried all the good stuff was in the trailer.
Apologies to Jackie van Beek and Madeleine Sami, who co-wrote, directed and starred in this female buddy film; it's hilarious and packed with witty, awkward and nutty ideas from start to finish.
The story follows a couple of romance cynics, best mates and business partners who, for a fee, will inform people their partners are breaking up with them, in creative and often over-the-top ways - fake pregnancy, mysterious disappearance and death being just a few.
A morally questionable occupation, to say the least, Jen (Van Beek) and Mel's (Sami) friendship and business is jeopardised when Mel falls for a client - young, sweet and not-so-bright Jordan (James Rolleston) - and begins checking up on another client's broken-hearted partner.
Van Beek and Sami's chemistry is excellent and the way they discuss anything and everything with great intimacy really makes them resonate. They may be strong female protagonists gently turning the "buddy film" on its head, but they're also wonderfully flawed characters.
There are plenty of gags we've seen before - drug taking, dance-offs, being mistaken for strippers - but they feel fresh and edgy thanks to casting, which includes many of New Zealand's funniest people, including Rose Matafeo, Jemaine Clement and a priceless Rima Te Wiata.
Rolleston, in his first roll back after his car accident two years ago, shows his versatility with scene-stealing comedic timing; but for all the big names the standout for me is newcomer Ana Scotney, who rocks it as Jordan's childhood sweetheart Sepa.
Laugh-out-loud funny and at times wonderfully subtle, this ever-so-likable romp confirms something many already knew, Van Beek and Sami can do almost anything.
Madeleine Sami, Jackie van Beek, James Rolleston
Madeleine Sami, Jackie van Beek
M (Drug use, sex scenes, sexual references & offensive language)
The perfect picker-upperer.