Obvious Child isn’t your typical romantic comedy. It has the same basic outline: two people meet and seem to be perfect for one another, some conflict keeps them apart, and throughout the course of the film we find out whether or not the two protagonists end up together. However, while the conflict that keeps our protagonists from true love is typically another person (ex-lover, parents, etc) or social standing, the conflict in Obvious Child is an unwanted pregnancy. Donna (Jenny Slate), a young slightly irreverent comedian has recently been dumped by a long term boyfriend and, after losing her job, falls into a fit of depression. After a particularly bad show, she meets Max (Jake Lacy) a nice, straight-laced business school graduate. The two appear to be complete opposites but, after a few drinks they eventually make it home and have a one night stand. Things get complicated for Donna as she finds out that she is pregnant with Max’s child. Realizes that she isn’t ready for it, Donna chooses to have an abortion just as Max re-enters her life. What follows is a series of amusingly awkward, heartwarming scenes as Donna tries to get her life together and ultimately decide will she or will she not go through with the abortion.
With the remarkable chemistry between the two leads it’s impossible not to like fall in love with them. Jenny Slate is equal parts raunchy and adorable while Jake Lacy is charmingly dorky in a way that endears him to the audience. There are strong performances supporting them with Gaby Hoffmann as Donna’s best friend Nellie and Gabe Liedman hilariously stealing every scene he’s in as Joey.
Writer/director Gillian Robespierre manages to do something most tend to shy away from for fear of alienating the audience. She takes comedic approach to a taboo topic and conveys the various physiological psychological feelings associated with said topic in a funny, respectful manner.
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