By Mr. Will Wong
Yet another whacky time at SXSW! Jeff Baena & Actress Alison Brie team-up to co-write Comedy SPIN ME ROUND, with the former also directing. The Film centers on a group of high- performers at an Italian-American restaurant chain get invited to attend an educational retreat in Florence, Italy and get way more than what they bargained for!
Amber (Brie) has worked at her restaurant as a manager for nine years and hopes secretly that this retreat will help her find love. Her last boyfriend left her in severe debt, leaving her to work this job. She’s incredibly-drawn to the face of the chain Nick Martucci (Alessandro Nivola) who will be on the retreat as well. And wouldn’t you know it, he is attracted to her too! Kat (Audrey Plaza), his assistant, tries to warn her of his ways and she finds herself confused between this looming affair and being subjected to this horribly mundane retreat.
The interesting thing about SPIN ME ROUND is that the Film begins like many other Retreat Comedies we’ve seen, with a clash of personality types, including Deb (Molly Shannon), the larger-than-life one in the group who seems to get in the way. But as things progress in the Second Act, we begin to realize that like this retreat, this Film isn’t quite what we signed-up for. Is this a Horror? By the Final Act, chaos ensues, but we’re here for it as it makes the Comedy memorable. We cannot unsee this, and yay, justice for pigs!
Brie is just great in the leading role as our eyes into this wild escape and through it all, the story has a strong feminist message that deviates from the standard Rom-Com fare. Nivola is entertaining and irresistibly greasy, though his allure makes it easy to see why Amber is so torn at times. Plaza is wonderful, though hardly seen enough in Kat’s chill. And Shannon of course is a hoot, perpetually self-absorbed in Deb‘s world, while others simply are living in it!
Don’t be surprised if you find yourself craving some Olive Garden after this!
SPIN ME ROUND streams at SXSW ’22 as follows:
Mar 12, 20226:15pm—7:59pm
Mar 14, 9:00am CDT – Mar 16, 9:00am CDT9:00am—10:44am
Mar 15, 20224:15pm—5:59pm
Mar 15, 20229:00pm—10:44pm
Mar 16, 20224:00pm—5:44pm
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