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Lynn Shelton
Keira Knighley, Chloe Grace Moretz, Sam Rockwell, Kaitlyn Dever, Jeff Garlin, Ellie Kemper, Mark Webber, Daniel Zovato, Gretchen Mol
Writing Credits:
Andrea Seigel

A Comedy About Acting Your Age and Other Adult Decisions.

In the throes of a quarter-life crisis, Megan panics when her boyfriend proposes, then, taking an opportunity to escape for a week, hides out in the home of her new friend, 16-year-old Annika, who lives with her world-weary single dad. MPAA:
Rated R

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 100 min.
Price: $24.99
Release Date: 2/10/2015

• Audio Commentary with Director Lynn Shelton
• “Lagging On with Lynn Shelton” Featurette
• “Shooting Seattle: The Look of Laggies” Featurette
• Six Deleted Scenes
• Previews


Panasonic TC-P60VT60 60-Inch 1080p 600Hz 3D Smart Plasma HDTV; Sony STR-DG1200 7.1 Channel Receiver; Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player using HDMI outputs; Michael Green Revolution Cinema 6i Speakers (all five); Kenwood 1050SW 150-watt Subwoofer.


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Laggies (2014)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (February 3, 2015)

Low-budget independent films come with enough problems. Why would anyone saddle one of those movies with a terrible, non-descriptive title such as Laggies?

Unfortunately, someone though that name worked well, so it ended up on a 2014 effort about a young woman coping with adulthood. 10 years after high school graduation, all her friends have moved on but Megan (Keira Knightley) remains stuck in neutral. She lacks direction and has yet to figure out what she wants to do with her life.

Megan gets a reality check when her longtime boyfriend Anthony (Mark Webber) proposes at the reception for her friend Allison’s (Ellie Kemper) wedding. Megan freaks out and flees the event.

When Megan ends up in a grocery store parking lot, 16-year-old Annika (Chloe Grace Moretz) tries to get her to buy beer for her and her buddies. This launches an improbable friendship, as Megan retreats from her so-called adult life to hang out with her teen pals and reassess her life.

When Laggies succeeds, it does so largely due to its cast – and particularly because of Knightley. Despite a dodgy American accent, she hits all the right notes as a woman who can’t quite decide whether to embrace her inner teen or to move on with her life. Knightley invests the part with the appropriate sense of self-confusion but without an absence of realism. She gives Megan funny moments without comedic indulgence and turns a potentially off-putting, irritating character into a likable personality we care for, even when we realize she should seem exceptionally annoying.

The rest of the actors flesh out their parts nicely as well. Moretz doesn’t get much meat as Annika – she exists more as plot device than anything else – but she brings some heart to the role. Sam Rockwell also gets stuck with an undercooked character, one whose arc becomes pretty clear in rapid order. While he doesn’t break a sweat as the goofy, sarcastic dad, he still delivers wit and spark to the film.

Like its main character, though, Laggies tends to lack a lot of direction, and it often relies on thin emotional elements to motivate the action. As I alluded earlier, the movie’s character tend to mostly be pretty one-dimensional, especially when you get outside of the lead trio.

In particular, Megan’s friends seem unlikable in a self-conscious way. I guess we’re supposed to believe that Megan hangs out with them due to a longtime bond from high school, but it feels unlikely, as the pals have nothing in common with her. Sure, I get that’s part of the point, but Megan’s friends appear to exist as a contrast, not as real people. They present annoying personalities and not much more.

Despite narrative and character issues, Laggies demonstrates enough bouncy charm to make it enjoyable. Lose the quality cast and this one sinks like a stone, but they manage to keep us with it.

The Blu-ray Grades: Picture B+/ Audio B-/ Bonus B-

Laggies appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. Expect a good transfer here.

Overall, sharpness came across well. Only light instances of softness occurred, as the image was usually accurate and concise. Jagged edges and moiré effects failed to appear, and edge haloes also didn’t become a factor. No print flaws marred the presentation.

We got a pretty standard palette here, with a mild orange/teal tint on display. That’s typical for modern movies, and the hues looked positive within the moderate stylistic constraints. Blacks were dark and deep, and shadows seemed smooth and concise. I felt pleased with this positive presentation.

As for the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Laggies, it gave us the kind of low-key mix I’d anticipate from a character-based comedy. Any instances of a broad soundscape were modest at best. A few minor elements opened up the track but those remained infrequent. Instead, the film offered decent stereo spread to the music along with gentle ambience. It didn’t sizzle, but it suited the material.

Audio quality was satisfactory. Speech always came across as accurate and distinctive, without edginess or other concerns. Music seemed warm and full, and effects provided concise elements, with solid low-end when appropriate. This was a perfectly competent track for a flick of this sort.

A mix of extras pop up here, and we begin with an audio commentary from director Lynn Shelton. She provides a running, screen-specific look at story/character areas, cast and performances, sets and locations, music, design choices, and related areas.

Shelton brings us a pretty satisfying chat. She covers a good array of subjects and does so in a bright, engaging manner. Only a few lulls occur, so expect an informative discussion.

Two featurettes follow and we head to the eight-minute, 46-second Lagging On with Lynn Shelton. We hear from Shelton, producer Alix Madigan, writer Andrea Seigel, executive producer Jennier Roth, co-producer Lacey Leavitt, and actors Mark Webber, Sam Rockwell, Jeff Garlin, Keira Knightley, and Ellie Kemper. We learn about how Shelton came to the project, cast, story and characters. A few minor details emerge, but “Lagging” remains fairly promotional.

Shooting Seattle: The Look of Laggies goes for six minutes, one second and features Roth, Webber, Knightley, Shelton, Seigel, Rockwell, Madigan, Kemper, costume designer Ronald Leamon, production designer John Lavin, costume supervisor Gerard Parr, director of photography Benjamin Kasulke, and location manager Dave Drummond. “Look” touches on locations, cinematography, costumes and other visual elements. Despite the piece’s brevity, it brings us a decent collection of notes.

Six Deleted Scenes occupy a total of nine minutes, 31 seconds. In these, various supporting characters get more attention, and the clips make them less one-dimensional and more likable. These segments probably would’ve helped the final film, as they would’ve made it more apparent why Megan continues to hang out with them.

The disc opens with ads for A Most Violent Year, Life After Beth, Obvious Child, The Spectacular Now and The Skeleton Twins. No trailer for Laggies appears here.

Due to a strong cast, Laggies overcomes a mix of pitfalls. It threatens to collapse under its own illogic but it stays afloat because of strong performances. The Blu-ray brings us good picture and audio as well as a fairly positive set of supplements. I can’t give Laggies a strong recommendation, but it does enough right to entertain.

Viewer Film Ratings: 4 Stars Number of Votes: 2
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