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Miles Teller shines in the long delayed comedy “Get a Job”

miles teller anna kendrick GET A JOB
For literally years now, I’d been looking forward to seeing Get a Job, the new (or newish, in this case now) film from Dylan Kidd. Last week, after an incredibly long delay/time spent sitting on the shelf, I finally saw the flick, which will be hitting theaters this Friday. I’m thrilled to report that it’s good stuff too, fully underserving of the fate it had been stuck with up until now. Honestly, even if it were terrible, I still don’t understand why it never was released. Director Dylan Kidd was a promising up and coming indie filmmaker, leading man Miles Teller has become a bigger and bigger star, and the supporting cast has the likes of Allison Brie, Bryan Cranston, and especially Anna Kendrick in it. That sounds more like a big time studio comedy than an ignored indie, right? Throw in how timely a subject it was tackling (one that’s still just as timely, unfortunately) and it’s ridiculous that we’re only first talking about Get a Job now. At least we’re talking about it though, and I’m going to do my part to talk it up today.

The film follows a college graduate named Will (Teller) as he navigates life in the real world, especially in terms of finding a job. Will wants to do something that inspires him and remain true to himself, but he has bills to pay and a girlfriend named Jillian (Kendrick) on a successful path that needs him to man up. So, he hits the pavement, looking to score some gainful employment. At the same time as Will and Jillian take their first steps into adulthood, Will’s father Roger (Cranston) loses his job and is out struggling like everyone else. This is a funny comedy, but also one with something important to say about careers and employment. Kidd directs from a script by Kyle Pennekamp and Scott Turpel, with the rest of the large ensemble cast, in addition to the aforementioned Brie, Cranston, Kendrick, and Teller, including Nicholas Braun, John Cho, Jorge Garcia, Marcia Gay Harden, John C. McGinley, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Brandon T. Jackson, and more.

A quick word on the journey the project took to actually reach the big screen. It started casting in early 2012 and was in production that year as well, meaning that this has taken over four years to come to a theater potentially near you. This is after Kidd basically didn’t get a job for about a decade after the one two punch of the fantastic Roger Dodger and the underrated P.S., which is really something. It’s off the shelf now, and I’m glad for that, but it boggles the mind that no one in a position of power found a way to get this one out of mothballs sooner. That being said, at least it’s finally seeing the light of day.

"The Divergent Series: Allegiant" World Premiere - Arrivals
For me, this is just a really charming movie. As an added bonus, Get a Job works as an excellent showcase for Teller, who has that easy charisma on full display here. This is what I wrote about Teller when I gave him a Spotlight on the Stars piece a few years back: “A mix of John Cusack and Vince Vaughn (plus his own unique flavor), Teller is going places, plain and simple. He’s only got about 20 or so credits to his name, but in his short time on the big screen he’s already established himself as someone worthy of the A-list.

Teller got his start pretty quickly when, after only a few appearances in shorts and a guest spot on the TV show The Unusuals, he was cast in a main supporting part opposite Nicole Kidman in Rabbit Hole. An Oscar player all season long, folks immediately took note of this kid, naming him someone to watch. If they only knew how right they were. In fact, less than a half decade later, he’s already turned in a couple of performances that are miles (no pun intended) above this high bar. He next showcased some dancing skills in the Footloose remake and had an odd cameo/supporting role in Project X, two movies that let him stretch out from the dark dramatic work he debuted with. The best was still yet to come though.Teller really established himself when he blew people away in The Spectacular Now. Playing a wise cracking teen who lives in the moment but comes to find that existence hollow due to his relationship with Shailene Woodley’s good hearted character, Teller stretched and wins you over in a big way. It’s a touching performance in a nearly perfect film. Teller and Woodley have tremendous chemistry and this was the role that I feel started the actor off on this path to the A-list. Since then, he’s had a few comedies/romantic comedies in 21 & Over, That Awkward Moment, and Two Night Stand (which happens to be much better than you’d expect and well worth seeking out) that have showcased him either as a comedian or as a romantic lead, while he’s also taken a big step into the mainstream with a notable part in the epic Divergent. The success of Divergent as well as its sequels was his entrance to the big A-list rankings, though he left us all stunned with his work in the drama Whiplash. Alongside J.K. Simmons (who gives one of the very best performances of 2014, if not the best), Teller essays the best performance of his career as a drum student going up against his instructor. It’s a magnificent bit of acting.”

Overall, I’m really fond of Get a Job, which is going out in limited release this week. I hope it manages to catch on, not just because Teller gets a solid bonus role of sorts to showcase, but also because it’s the sort of quality indie comedy that we don’t get nearly enough of. In a just world, a studio would have put this out with a large scale campaign, but considering the road it has taken so far to get here, any release at all is something to celebrate. Give it a shot and I think you’ll more than like what you see…

Be sure to check out Get a Job, finally coming to screens this weekend!

About Joey Magidson

A graduate of Stony Brook University (where he studied Cinema and Cultural Studies), resides in Brooklyn, New York. He contributes to several other film-related websites and is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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