Enjoying dinner and catching a movie make up the traditional date package for the much-anticipated Valentine’s Day festivities. Hollywood understands this quite well. What’s their method of cashing in on the holiday? Produce a script based on struggle-enduring love, and promote the hell out of it. Thus is the case with Steve Pink’s About Last Night. It contains belly-filled laughter, but suffers a lack of depth and tension in the most crucial moments.
About Last Night is a story about boy meets girl, and both boy and girl try to find love in each other despite their insecurities. Forever bachelor Bernie (Kevin Hart) recounts his previous night of passion with Joan (Regina Hall), to heartbroken best friend Danny (Michael Ealy) when he serendipitously meets Debbie (Joy Bryant), Joan’s best friend. Danny and Debbie strike up a love affair whilst encountering the trials and tribulations of loving another human being. From here the audience witnesses the struggles couples experience as the question beckons, can Debbie and Danny’s love make it through a relationship?
The film takes off at a pace dictated by the changing of the seasons. Thus, the film experiences a relationship just as a newfound, head-over-heels couple would. The seasonally divided story structure portrays various plateaus that couples reach throughout different stages of a relationship. However, the story is the weak link in About Last Night. The events leading up to the “climax” of the film lack dramatic tension and sustenance, so when that pivotal moment arrives, About Last Night just coasts until the end lacking any need for quality falling action.
Despite the troubled story structure, About Last Night thrives with rambunctious comedic performances from Philly-native Kevin Hart and Regina Hall. They both serve as the wild, yet sensitive best friends who balance out their more dramatic and passionate counterparts. Most of the film is forgettable, but the interactions that Hart and Hall share with each other, and the rest of the cast, will linger with audiences. Kevin Hart continues to deliver with his outlandish yet refined comedy. It appears it’s time that Hart tackle a piece of work that he’s not already conquered.
About Last Night is worth the money for admission this Valentine’s weekend if you’ve already seen the Oscar nominees that are still in theaters. Couples will enjoy it if they are interested in seeing a film about the struggles and successes of a relationship, but that’s about it.
About Last Night opens today in Philly theaters.
Author: Kyle Harter
Kyle Harter recently relocated to Philadelphia after receiving his BA in Film from the University of Central Florida. Kyle aspires to a career of filmmaking, writing, and adventure. Kyle has a mild obsession with Quentin Tarantino, coffee, and Corgis. He co-authors the film blog, The Main Squeeze.