but none has been as badly affected as the vacation comedy.
It reminded us early on of what we couldn’t accomplish, what we were putting off or canceling.
Watching celebrities like “Steve -Coogan and Rob Brydon- eat” and drink their way around Greece was a
strange mix of nostalgia and anger. Perhaps that’s why “Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar,” a surreal and
fantastical comedy, appealed to so many people.
“It was not palatable enough to be entertaining while also being stupid enough to be cathartic”.
Then there was “The White Lotus,” a dark comedy set in a posh
Hawaiian resort appealed to some deep-seated superiority of not being “those people” on one level.
most of which were produced or at least thought of long before March 2020 (with the noteworthy
exception of “The White Lotus”). Even so, a genre that usually goes down smoothly became a little
difficult to swallow.
The most recent entry is “Vacation Friends,” a long-gestating concept about two mismatched couples who
connect on vacation that has starred everyone from Chris Pratt to Ice Cube. In March 2020, it eventually
began filming, with “Lil Rel Howery, Yvonne Orji, John Cena, and Meredith Hagner” forming the quartet.
It was a bad omen.
Despite the delays, recasting, rewrites (Tom Mullen, Tim Mullen, Jonathan Goldstein, John Francis Daley,and director Clay Tarver all get screenplay credits),
and the strangeness of filming in a pandemic, “Vacation Friends” turned out to be a fairly enjoyable experience.
Howery portrays Marcus, the straight-laced owner of a construction company who wants to propose to
his yuppie girlfriend Emily (Orji). Things go wrong right away, despite his careful preparation. But, after
being brought to tears by Marcus’ proposal, another couple, Ron (Cena) and Kyla (Hagner), offers them to
sleep in their presidential suite.
Ron and Kyla are outgoing people. They’re a bit loud and brash, and they make a few dubious choices on
behalf of their new pals, but it all stems from a good place. They’re also not wealthy, as Emily deduces
from the opulent surroundings. They are making the most of their holiday, which they have spent every
single penny on.
It’s a classic comic setup, and despite Marcus and Emily’s objections, they quickly learn to love Ron and
Kyla’s way of life and live as intoxicated free spirits on vacation. To take things a step further, Marcus and
Emily are given an unpleasant shock when their vacationing pals actually interrupt their posh wedding
It’s a wonderful showcase for Cena’s wild abandon as well as Howery in a new kind of character.
Robert Wisdom, Lynn Whitfield, Anna Maria Horsford, and Chuck Cooper portray the bride and groom’s parents.
“Vacation Friends” isn’t really ground-breaking. During the trip and the wedding, there are a few real
chuckles to be had involving drugs, golf, and a catamaran. During the inevitable falling out phase, there’s
some tedium as well. But it’s pleasant in a manner that doesn’t make you regret squandered time and
memories from the previous year. Not to overstate the importance of “Vacation Friends,” but it might be
a hint that we’re finally ready to let go of the pandemic’s grip on lighter films about frantic trips and
destination weddings and simply enjoy them.
The Motion Picture Association of America has classified “Vacation Friends,”
,” a 20th Century Studios release on Hulu Friday, R for “crude sexual allusions, profanity throughout, and
drug material.” The film has a running length of 105 minutes. “Two and a half out” of four stars.
Anne Heche Could Be Dating Peter Thomas Roth
Review: Director Clay Tarver’s “Vacation Friends”
© 2018 new 24 hour
© 2018 new 24 hour