Leslye Headland has made two films with a raw sexual edge, Bachelorette and the 2014 remake, About Last Night so it was no surprise that would be a part of Sleeping with Other People. It was however, a surprise that the very thing that was meant to make the film unique became its greatest weakness.
The film opens with the two leads, Jason Sudeikis and Alison Brie meeting under unusual circumstances. She is banging on a classmate’s dorm door and he helps her out. They end up having sex, a first for both of them, and then the film shoots forward to present day.
It turns out that Lainey (Brie), is still having an unhealthy affair with the man that she was after in college. He is married, only asks for her when he wants her, and treats her terribly when they’re together. It’s hard to believe that this film was written and directed by a woman. Meanwhile, Jake (Sudeikis), is a crude, gruff, monotone, womanizing, sarcastic asshole who sleeps with women unrelentingly, and breaks up with them by sleeping with someone who the women is close with so she’ll be hurt enough to break up with him.
The film plots along in a predictable manner as the audience cringes through unnecessary and unfunny scenes in which Sudeikis and his friend display an example of some of the most reprenhensible men in a rom-com in a long time. Amanda Peet also stars in the film but her part is also that a pathetic woman’ albeit a successful one, who trusts Jake and is deeply hurt by his coldness and selfishness.
The story feels like it’s about 20 year olds but stars performers who look like they’re in their 40’s. Who is the audience for this? Younger viewers won’t care and most people the age of the actors won’t relate to it. Alison Brie is beautiful and has great timing but there is no chemistry here. She also has little to work with character wise and is inflicted to lingerie and sexy clothes scenes. Jason Sudeikis who has great charm and charisma in other work is painful to watch in this film. His body appears as soulless as his character. There is no glimmer behind his eyes. His voice plods on and all of the jokes written for his character fall flat. Sleeping with Other People is a strikeout in every possible way.
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Director: Leslye Headland
Writer: Leslye Headland
Starring: Alison Brie, Jason Sudeikis, Jordan Carlos, Amanda Peet
Runtime: 1hr 41min
Release date: September 25, 2015
MPAA rating: R