DVD/Blu Ray

A Simple Favour (15) | Home Ents Review

Director: Paul Feig, US, 2018, 116 mins

Cast: Anna Kendrick, Blake Lively, Henry Golding, Linda Cardellini, Rupert Friend, Bashir Salahuddin

Review by Carlie Newman

With a mixture of styles, the film is an absolute delight. Humorous but with an exciting story giving the movie the feeling of a thriller, the cast is delightful and the film a great watch. Rent or buy now!

It begins with a young widow, Stephanie (Anna Kendrick) presenting her blog. It is aimed mainly at yummy mummies and she gives menu, parental advice and general housekeeping tips. Stephanie becomes emotional as she tells her audience that her great friend, Emily (Blake Lovely) has disappeared. Then we go back to see how the friends met. They have children at the same school. But while Stephanie is keen on volunteering for everything on offer at the school, Emily just concentrates on her job in the city (meaning New York). Emily invites Stephanie to her home for drinks and puts out friendly overtures. Stephanie, who has no friends, is over the moon and soon finds herself looking after Emily’s son as Emily keeps asking her for help.

As time goes by and there is still no sign of Emily, Stephanie supports Emily’s husband Sean (Henry Golding). Stephanie and Sean get very close and begin a sexual relationship. But director, Paul Feig, changes the direction of the movie and Stephanie starts to investigate her best friend’s past life. What she finds out takes the film into yet another style.

In fact, the film is full of twists. There are some very sinister paths that the film goes down in addition to much comedy. The film is well directed with some beautiful costume designs (by Renee Ehrlich Kalfus) – owned or worn by Emily. Good background music with Serge Gainsbourg songs. Jessica Sharzer’s adaptation of Darcy Bell’s novel manages to combine very disparate elements.

The acting is first rate. Anna Kendrick’s interpretation of the over-enthusiastic mother contrasts nicely with Blake Lively’s sophisticated, swearing career mum. They are well-supported by Henry Golding as Emily’s husband and Bashir Salahuddin as Detective Summerville who probes until he finds out just what is really going on with the threesome. There is, too, a delightful cameo form Rupert Friend as the arrogant designer that Emily works for.

Extras on the DVD include an interview with the director; audio commentary tracks; two featurettes: one looking at the two main characters and one on the style of the film. Also deleted scenes are always interesting to see.