Hearing that a lot of people enjoyed Amy Schumer’s TRAINWRECK made sense to me. Most people enjoy her work, even if I previously hadn’t, and it’s directed and produced by Judd Apatow. But I enjoyed it, which surprised me, because I don’t always enjoy Schumer. Perhaps it’s the Apatow involvement, or perhaps she’s just growing up a bit.
Regardless, TRAINWRECK is not just an entertaining film, it’s actually really good.
Schumer’s character starts off the film without much stability or direction, personally or professionally. When she is selected to write an article for the publication she works for, she finds herself out of her depth professionally. As she gets to know the man she’s interviewing, she starts exploring new ground emotionally.
The straw that helps stir this drink and makes it easy to imbibe is Bill Hader, who actually plays the “straight man” to Schumer’s absurdity, and he does it really well. That’s not to say he’s not funny, but he helps act as grounding force which keeps Schumer’s character from coming off the rails. He also provides a great juxtaposing figure for LeBron James, who is excellent in his role as Hader’s friend who just so happens to be one of the best professional basketball players in the world LeBron James.
The material’s not nearly heavy enough to show off Brie Larson’s acting skills, nor is her role large enough to show much of her comedic ability, but she adeptly fills the role of Schumer’s sister. Tilda Swinton gets more scenes but her character has less depth, but she nails her part of the film as a catalyst for a few things that set the story in motion. There’s even a small role for former WWE World Champion John Cena, who is another pleasant surprise in the film in terms of athletes with a comedic side.
Perhaps the biggest shock about this film is how much heart it has. When I look back ten years from now and think about where my affinity for Amy Schumer began, this is likely to be the film to which I point. She made me laugh and before the film was over, she found multiple ways to bring a tear to my eye.
I know, right? Totally wasn’t expecting that to happen.
Easily one of the top 5 comedies of 2015, and certainly one of the top 20 comedies of the decade, this is a flick for which most people over the age of 15 should make time.
My rating: 86 out of 100