“Everyone gets old. Not everyone grows up.” Amen. And welcome to the new tagline for Jason Reitman‘s “Young Adult,” his follow-up feature to “Up In The Air,” and his second collaboration with “Juno” screenwriter Diablo Cody. By all accounts, “Young Adult” and its ugly and unapologetic script and characters are going to be one difficult pill to swallow for audiences. The New York Times calls Charlize Theron‘s self-involved lead character in the film one of the most unlikable protagonists in recent memory, our recent review out of Austin called the film, “uflinchingly funny and painful” and when Cody recently described the film she said succintly, “assholes don’t change.”
Sounds like a cake walk, right? “Young Adult” centers on a desperate and unhinged young adult fiction writer (played by Theron) who returns to her home in small-town Minnesota, looking to rekindle a romance with her ex-boyfriend, who is now married with kids. The film also stars Patton Oswalt, Patrick Wilson, Elizabeth Reaser, Collette Wolfe and J.K. Simmons in a very brief, catch-it-if-you can voice cameo (reports that said Simmons was the narrator turned out to be false; there is no narrator).
But will “Young Adult” be too ugly for Oscar? Will it earn Theron a Best Actress performance nod or will it go the way of say, Noah Baumbach‘s “Margot At The Wedding,” which featured a similarly ugly (but excellent) turn by Nicole Kidman, but went completely noticed by Academy voters that year (and arguably by audiences as well). It’s hard to say and Reitman seems to have more luck with the Academy then Baumbach does sadly. Though both of them seem to be hitting on the same theme: an accute arrested development in 30 or 40-something adults (see Baumbach’s version on this affliction in “Greenberg“).
Either way, two new elements have arrived from the film. A new poster (via Hitfix) and a new image (via Entertainment Weekly). “Young Adult” opens in limited release on December 9 and then begins wide expansion on December 16.