Movie #191 2020: Always Be My Maybe (2019)

Thank goodness for Netflix. Still bringing out new content when there’s no cinemas? Not all heroes wear capes.

For an bit of added lightness in the current climate, we are sent Always Be My Maybe, a comedy movie with a romantic story line. Yeah, it’s a rom-com, but not in the traditional sense. Childhood friends Sasha and Marcus reunite after fifteen years but at different stages in their lives. Whilst Sasha is now a world-renowned celebrity chef, Marcus is still in the same suburb of San Francisco, playing in the same band, and smoking the same pot. As a result, the movie encircles the pair of them and how they fit into each other’s lives now after such a long hiatus.

The entire plot of this movie is incredibly obvious, as most romantic comedies are, but it’s still a super cute movie. Moreover, it’s about time there were more Western-made movies like this with a couple who isn’t fucking white at the forefront. If anything, the fact that this is a story about an Asian-American couple only made it more interesting and refreshing. It’s time for NEW STORIES. Hollywood, take note.

Both lead actors here are brilliant, especially Ali Wong, who I’ve not actually seen in anything until now. I know, I’ve been living under a rock. However, the breakout star here for me was Michelle Buteau as Sasha’s best friend/personal assistant. She is easily the funniest person in this movie, playing her character as equal parts animated and deadpan.

I won’t lie, for the first thirty minutes, this movie is definitely more ”rom” than ”com”. There’s nothing especially funny to take note of as the story is set up and the viewer is given a whistle stop tour of the backstory and what happened to force the two main characters to grow apart. After that, however, it started to get really funny. It’s not exactly thigh-slapping, rolling-on-the-floor laughing type of comedy, but more real life ‘what if’ humour that makes you feel as though you really know the people in the movie. Still, not the funniest movie I’ve ever seen, but it’s fun nonetheless.

This is possibly the first time so far this year that I’ve really been struck by the set decoration in a film. Some of the interiors are freakin’ amazing; whoever dressed them is absolutely insane. Though I’ve never been to California, this all seemed to depict modern day life there extremely well.

With a surprise appearance from Keanu Reeves who manages to pull a top notch comedy performance out of the bag, I really enjoyed this film. That’s not to say I will remember much of it by next week, but it’s fun! Exactly the sort of thing you should be watching in these bizarre times.

Always Be My Maybe is available to stream on Netflix in the UK.

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