Great films rarely collect dust on studio shelves for years before being released. Get A Job, which wrapped production in 2012 and disappeared completely until earlier this year, is no exception.
Developed as a comedic on the so-called millennial generation and their struggles in America’s competitive job market, Get A Job feels stale despite the lingering cultural relevancy of its premise. The story follows Will Davis (Miles Teller), a recent college graduate who quickly learns the working world is not what he thought it would be. The same goes for his girlfriend, Jillian (Anna Kendrick), his recently unemployed father (Bryan Cranston), and his closest friends (Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Nicholas Braun, and Brandon T. Jack playing video game addicted potheads). Each must do whatever they can to acclimate to the demands of their chosen career field, but even their best efforts are often not enough to guarantee steady employment. Still, they have one another, and a wide array of genre tropes too predictable to both writing out here to carry them through.
The talent behind Get A Job is unquestionable, even though the younger stars had yet to become international darlings when the film was originally produced, but largely inexperienced screenwriters Kyle Pennekamp and Scott Turpel have not seen quite the same success. The same can be said for director Dylan Kidd, whose leadership here reflects that of someone who has binged one too many coming-of-age romantic comedies and too few films with actual dramatic heft. The story feels simultaneously hacked to the bone and overwrought with exposition. Funny moments occur, but they’re so infrequent you wouldn’t be blamed for forgetting the film was supposed to be a comedy and not some edgy after school special hoping to scare kids away from a life of rebelling against the man.
Some films are so wonderfully constructed from floor to ceiling that reviewing them quickly devolves into several hundred or even thousand word articles about the meaningful impact witnessing such impeccably crafted art had on your soul. Other films, though lacking in craftsmanship, offer enough laughs to keep you giggling for days or even weeks after your initial viewing. Get A Job is neither of those things, and it doesn’t even come close to pretending to be. Despite boasting a talented cast who has since gone on to be serious contenders at ever major awards show this movie cannot find a rhythm or true sense of fun to save itself. Pennekamp and Turpel may have been onto something when they penned the script around 2011, but in 2016 every single scene in this movie feels so incredibly dated that even Director Dylan Kidd’s best efforts cannot find life in the story. If the studio behind this film didn’t think the cast would sell tickets this film would never have been released, and honestly that would have been the far less embarrassing way for this Hollywood saga to have played out.