30 Days Movie Review
Instead of being a schlock comedy about drug rehab, 30 Days is an always smart, often thoughtful film about detachment, breaking up, true love, and how all doesn't always turn out for the best.
Jordan (Ben Shenkman) and Sarah (Arija Bareikis) are a pair of upper-middle class New Yorkers. Jordan co-owns and operates a liquor store. Sarah is a publicist. Set up by friends, Jordan and Sarah end up sleeping together because Jordan can't remember the name of a girl he slept with.
By the time you reach this event, you can be pretty damn sure that this isn't going to be your run-of-the-mill romance... Or is it?
Sure, the average studio flick won't have a relationship that breaks up because the man asks the woman to marry her, but this kind of thing is definitely a trend in the indie world. Aaron Harnick himself was in a similar movie by the name of Judy Berlin just prior to directing 30 Days. It's becoming as clear-cut and predictable as studio films are criticized for being for... studio will tend to mean a happy ending and independent will tend to mean a ponderous, and consequently, unhappy ending.
The result is that 30 Days is a calculated fiscal risk... low investment for a slightly higher gain.
Regardless of the fact that we've thought the same thing a hundred times before, 30 Days still gives that wonderful illusion of originality that allows us to enjoy it guilt-free. It might not have anything actually new to put into the debate about male-female relationships, but it does its business in a way that is entertaining and offers a few new jokes, not to mention a final shot so unorthodox you have to laugh.
30 Days is moderately well acted, moderately well directed, and moderately well filmed. Its psuedo-originality manages to make this otherwise midlist picture into an enjoyable, thoughtful one worth your $10 if you like independent films, though it would be better placed as a video rental (or even a buy).