Bree Turner and various other celebrities gathered on Saturday night for Entertainment Weekly's annual Comic Con party held at the Hard Rock Hotel in San Diego, California, United States - Sunday 24th July 2016
Despite taking a full-on approach to the issue of alcoholism, filmmaker Ponsoldt undermines his own case by telling a story about the problem itself rather than the people caught up in it. And by avoiding the bigger questions, he leaves us with characters and a situation that are hard to care about, no matter how harrowing the story gets.
Schoolteacher Kate (Winstead) is a mess. Out drinking every night with her husband Charlie (Paul), she turns up drunk to teach her classroom of 6-year-olds. One morning when she's sick, she lets them believe she's pregnant. But lying to the kids sparks her guilt, which gets worse when a colleague (Offerman) covers for her and her boss (Mullally) throws a baby shower. So she joins AA and gets help from her sponsor Jenny (Spencer) to straighten out her life. But once she's sober she wonders whether she can stay with the still-drunk Charlie.
Essentially the film lets all of the characters off the hook since it's the alcohol that's the real villain, not any failing of willpower or self-discipline. In this world, it's not possible to be "the kind of people who have a glass of wine with dinner": you're either a falling-down drunk or a pious teetotaller. And even worst, both Kate and Charlie have tragic back-stories that explain why they are alcoholics. So the film's approach is purely superficial, which makes it impossible to identify with the characters or even root for them to sort out their messy lives.
Continue reading: Smashed Review
Kate and Charlie Hannah's marriage came about through their shared love of partying and getting drunk. All is well in their relationship as long as they are drinking together. However, when Kate's excessive partying pushes her into the dangerous territory of hard drugs threatening her teaching career when she continuously lies to her boss, she decides that it's time to deal with her problem and quit the booze for good. While Charlie vows to help her, he finds going sober less easy and Kate beings to question whether their relationship is built on love or whether their vision of each other has been blurred by alcohol over the past years. Quitting drinking also forces Kate to confront her conduct at work and her difficult relationship with her mother.
'Smashed' is a comedy drama with more drama than comedy. While the antics of Kate and Charlie may be funny at first sight, it is clear as the story goes on that this a story about burying your darkest problems. It has been directed by James Ponsoldt ('Off the Black') who also co-wrote the movie with actress Susan Burke in her screenplay debut. 'Smashed' is scheduled for release this year on December 14th 2012.
Continue: Smashed Trailer
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