Film & TV

That Awkward Moment, a Surprisingly Good Dude-Bro Version of Sex and the City

While our ingenues scurry toward teen best sellers and David O. Russell flicks, here's the next generation of talented leading men swaggering into a dude-bro Sex and the City.

At night, best friends played by Zac Efron, Miles Teller, and Michael B. Jordan — aka the player, the goof, and the romantic — pop Viagra and head to the bar. In the mornings, they discuss their conquests over brunch. They never say the names Samantha, Carrie, and Charlotte, but they've gotta see the parallels. After all, they're so pop culture-obsessed they quote Jerry Maguire and insult each other with zingers like "What are you, Bridget Jones?" and the funny but flummoxing "You're like the Judge Reinhold of Beverly Hills Cop about not getting in a relationship, except you're an asshole."

The guys look like puppies playing dress-up in their fancy Manhattan jobs (Jordan is a doctor, Efron and Teller design chick-lit book covers with the breathtaking insight that women like shoes).

But while it's easy to tease first-time writer-director Tom Gormican's raunchy rom-com, the trio has a shaggy chemistry, and most of the jokes hit — so many, in fact, that when the lads vow that they'll never, ever, have girlfriends again, we don't actually think they're serious until the rushed final act when we realize that was supposed to be a plot point.

Kudos to Imogen Poots and Mackenzie Davis for playing interesting human beings, not shallow fuck buddies (though these commitment-phobic guys wish that's all they were).

And watch out for a closing credits cameo from Michael K. Williams, who played Omar against Jordan in The Wire. It's all in the game.

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Amy Nicholson was chief film critic at LA Weekly from 2013 to 2016. Her work also appeared in the other Voice Media Group publications – DenverWestword, Phoenix New Times, Miami New Times, Broward-Palm Beach New Times, Houston Press, Dallas Observer and OC Weekly – and in VMG’s film partner, the Village Voice.

Nicholson’s criticism was recognized by the Los Angeles Press Club and the Association of Alternative Newsmedia. Her first book, Tom Cruise: Anatomy of an Actor, was published in 2014 by Cahiers du Cinema.