Review: That Awkward Moment

Zac Efron’s latest comedic offering defies the stereotypical rom-com. reviews


Director: Tom Gormican
Starring: Zac Efron, Miles Teller, Michael B Jordan
Running Time: 94 minutes
Rating: ★★★☆☆

The romantic comedy genre is largely overrun with formulaic films starring lonely 30-something women desperate to find love, so a film about three young men that try not to find love comes as a refreshing change, adding to a small, yet needed, sub-genre of rom-coms for guys. Previously there have been a few, more male-centred romantic comedies, such as Fifty First Dates and Forgetting Sarah Marshall yet the initial aim to deliberately avoid love is what makes this film that little bit different.

When you go to see a romantic comedy, it must be remembered that they exist to be general feel-good films that you don’t have to concentrate on too much, thus it is expected that this one be no different: predictable with bad jokes, cheesy speeches and everyone getting their girl in the end. This in mind, That Awkward Moment cannot be criticised on those points, for they are what make a good rom-com!

The premise of That Awkward Moment is an intriguing one and a good and original (for a rom-com anyway) idea. However, the acting definitely could have been significantly improved, particularly in Zac Efron’s case with certain scenes appearing stiff, unnatural and ironically awkward. Despite Efron’s clear attempts to be humorous, the laughs were certainly stolen by Miles Teller’s performance as Daniel; at times it seemed as though Teller would have made a more engaging lead, though perhaps without the Hollywood good looks that undeniably attract women to the film.

The story lines following Efron and Teller were both enjoyable and relatable (albeit predictable), however, Michael Jordan’s entire plot was bland and forgettable. It seemed as though Gormican just wanted a way to keep Jordan in the film, for the only part that his character actually contributed to (the pact between the friends to stay single) didn’t overshadow the other, and let’s face it, main characters.

So, as long as you are expecting a typical rom-com, and not a deep, award-winning concoction of excellent acting and original, witty script, That Awkward Moment delivers what it says on the tin: a romantic comedy enjoyable for both guys and girls (even my rom-com hating boyfriend liked it). Therefore, despite technical downfalls such as unnecessary plot lines, poor acting and unfunny jokes, as a whole it was thoroughly enjoyable and definitely worth seeing again.

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