For a Good Time, Call… (2012) Movie Review (8.1/10 – Great)
Review by MSN
Made for a well-spent shoe-string budget, director Jamie Travis’ feature debut “For a Good Time, Call …” is not just smart and sexy — which, to be honest, is rare enough in filmmaking these days — but it’s also got a great deal of humanity and humor. The two female lead characters, played by Ari Graynor and co-screenwriter Lauren Anne Miller, are not just written as sexual human beings, but, even more impressively, as fully-realized human beings. It’s ideas and execution make it both rare and well-done, and if the end result is more medium-cool than sizzling, better that than frigid at the center or charred at the edges.
The plot begins with that time-honored story-starter: a huge, almost-affordable NYC apartment. Katie (Graynor) needs a roommate to pay the newly-increased rent, while Lauren (Miller), freshly separated from a bland beau, needs a place to live. The two are brought together by mutual pal Jesse (Justin Long, laying the flamboyance on a with the delicacy of a dump truck raising its payload and gunning the engine). Soon Lauren realizes that the moans and groans coming from Katie’s room aren’t pleasure but business; Katie works in part as a phone sex provider.
Review by Variety
A genial starring vehicle for talented comediennes Lauren Anne Miller and Ari Graynor, Jamie Travis’ “For a Good Time, Call … ” doesn’t rise much above sitcom level in material or execution, but provides enough laughs and goodwill to be disarmingly entertaining. Potty-mouthed yet basically harmless — one protag even turns out to be a closet virgin — this comedy about two cash-strapped Manhattanites who get ahead by operating a phone-sex service could score a modest theatrical breakout, particularly if marketed toward femme viewers who may later bring the b.f. along. Home-format deals will be solid, with remake sales possible.
Mousy Lauren (Miller) gets a rude awakening when her hunky but shallow live-in beau (James Wolk) announces he’s going to Italy for awhile on business, considers their relationship suspended while he’s there, and advises her to find her own place. Simultaneously, brash Katie (Graynor) learns the roomy apartment she inherited from grandma is no longer rent-controlled, and she’s in no position to pay the new rate alone.
Review by THR
PARK CITY — A feel-good raunch-com whose dirty-talk plot comes from a convincingly female perspective instead of feeling like cut-and-paste Apatow, For a Good Time, Call… does ably follow the Apatow ratio of sweet to salty, and keeps the audience laughing consistently. Commercial prospects are strong and, after Bridesmaids, buyers should be especially eager for this kind of laffer.
After being a reliable bright spot in many supporting parts (she’s also in fest entry Celeste and Jesse Forever), Ari Graynor starts this lead role with a wiggle (she’s ordering Chinese takeout while doing stripper-pole exercises) and remains physically animated throughout as Katie, a Manhattanite whose many bills-paying jobs include a gig answering phone-sex calls. Lauren (Lauren Anne Miller), her straight-laced, privileged new roommate, moves in reluctantly after being dumped by a boyfriend.