“Sleeping with Other People” began its theatrical run in Houston today by IFC Films.
At Columbia University in 2002, Jake (Jason Sudeikis) meets Lainey (Alison Brie) for the first time after she makes a scene in front of the entire dorm over not having sex with “the most boring man alive” Matthew Sovochek (Adam Scott). Jake and Lainey realize that they’re both virgins and choose each other as their first.
In the present day, Jake sabotages every serious relationship he has by sleeping with someone close to them while Lainey claims to have a love addiction and is currently having an affair with Sovochek; who is now a gynecologist. After over a decade of not having contact with one another, Jake and Lainey reconnect as best friends who vent their current sexual frustrations and end up falling for each other in the process.
Speaking as someone who waited over a decade past the average age someone usually loses their virginity, it may sound strange to say that “Sleeping with Other People” is extremely relatable and sincere in addition to being laugh out loud funny. Jake and Lainey feel like real people with an addiction that the film portrays as a serious issue. Their conversations are completely authentic with no restraints as every obscene detail is painted and illustrated into a beautiful mental image that is either extremely amusing or has you reflecting on your own bedroom escapades.
The romantic comedy is able to completely embody the struggle of being a virgin at an older age than society is used to. Two individuals who were strangers at the beginning of one fateful evening are attracted to one another solely because they’re lonely and want to know what sex is like. It’s something they have in common that initially sparks something greater. “Sleeping with Other People” taps into the virgin mindset with an opening that lasts less than ten minutes, which is quite remarkable.
Adam Brody has a hilariously memorable public meltdown in a restaurant once the film transitions to the present day; complete with vulgar insults, screaming loud enough to make a scene, and furiously throwing a cloth napkin in an effort to sell his outrage. Jake and Lainey have both had their fair share of disastrous relationships. The stalker texts read aloud after Jake’s one night stand are hysterical and nightmarish, especially if you’ve ever gone through anything similar. The chemistry that Jason Sudeikis and Alison Brie share is evident the minute they start talking about porn and drugs back in Jake’s dorm room in 2002. Their conversations are provocative, amusing, and charming in a very adult sense. There’s this genuine nature found in their raunchy discussions that you can’t help but enjoy.
Jason Mantzoukas portrays Xander, one of Jake’s closest friends; Xander, along with his wife Naomi (played by Andrea Savage), are sensationally humorous. They tend to steal the film whenever they’re on-screen: whether it’s their absurd stories told while intoxicated, priceless perspective on having children, or reminiscing about the drugs they used to partake in; Mantzoukas and Savage are not only a convincing couple but an uproariously funny one as well.
What really sells the film is Jake’s original perspective of sex; the idea of making love being something special that is shared between two individuals that brings them closer together. That is why anyone waits as long as they do. You may say that it’s because you haven’t found the right person or you don’t go out on enough dates to meet new people, but all that means is that you have standards and morals that haven’t been met yet. Someone is out there waiting to make your life better than it already is and they are unquestionably worth waiting for; even if it takes twelve years to find them. “Sleeping with Other People” makes this point in a subtle yet effective way.
While most are gushing over how side-splitting “Trainwreck” is, “Sleeping with Other People” is everything that R-rated comedy should have been and then some. The entire cast is funny and flawed in a way that not only keeps them entertaining the duration of the film, but brings them to life that is legitimately convincing. “Sleeping with Other People” is basically an hour and forty minutes that explores the phrase, “It’s complicated.” Writer and director Leslye Headland has created a film that is ingeniously sentimental, unbelievably empathetic, and extraordinarily comical.