May 29, 2017

“Young Adult” earns raves after L.A. “Surprise Screening” – AWARDS ALLEY

By Sean O’Connell While one half of the movie blogosphere attended an early screening of “The Muppets” (word is it’s extremely funny and more touching than you’d expect), the other half – the one dedicated to the ongoing Oscar race – filed into the New Beverly for a “Surprise Screening” that wasn’t such a secret to those who knew Paramount was bringing Jason Reitman’s “Young Adult” for a sneak peek and Q-and-A.

The studio has been road-showing the awards hopeful, though this is, I believe, the first official look at Reitman’s reunion with “Juno” scribe Diablo Cody ahead of its planned December release.

And the reactions have done nothing to slow the film’s Oscar momentum down.

“Short version: Young Adult is fantastic. More later,” InContention’s Kris Tapley Tweeted right after the screening.

“Patton Oswalt, portraying a blunt-spoken, half-crippled fat guy who befriends Charlize Theron’s neurotic writer character, is now a Best Supporting Actor contender…definitely,” Jeff Wells writes on Hollywood Elsewhere.

Journalist Chris Willman added, “I think ‘Young Adult’ might be my second-favorite movie of the year. But my No. 1 unredemptive movie. … Theron’s Young Adult character would be unwatchable if she weren’t… Charlize Theron. Trying/failing to imagine who else could’ve played it.”

High praise. I feared “Young Adult” wasn’t interested in being an Oscar player when it sidestepped the fall film festival circuit. Especially Toronto, where Reitman is king. But it sounds like all systems are go for “Adult,” which is ramping up what could be a very successful Oscar campaign.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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