By Felix Dalgo
The 1-4-0: #Ashby is a different take on what you might consider to be a comedy. The film is funny but has its serious moments that might make you think about your surroundings. Unlike other comedy films out there, this one tries and succeeds on delivering a message to the audience.
The Gist: Ed Wallis (Nat Wolff) and his spirited single mom (Sarah Silverman) are new in town. At school, Ed struggles to fit in. He secretly desires to make the football team although the jocks disapprove, and he connects with only one other student, brainy Eloise (Emma Roberts). Given an assignment to interview someone “old,” Ed approaches his new neighbor Ashby Holt (Mickey Rourke), a man facing troubling news he’d rather avoid. Although Ashby pretends to be a retired salesman, Ed soon learns that he’s actually a former CIA assassin. As Ed gains new perspective from his unlikely friendship with Ashby, he’s prompted to take more chances with his life, and with Eloise. Meanwhile, as Ashby faces a crossroads, he must find the courage to settle old scores and set things right.
What Works: The film does an absolutely amazing job at telling the story between Ed and Ashby. This is one of the few films where the audience can see a friendship from beginning to end. This is important because as a member of the audience you can see the entire process of their relationship. It becomes something so personal, because you are watching the character’s feelings unfold and you are able to see it all the way through the end. Watching them in the films made me feel I was part of their friendship. Not many films are able to do that.
What Doesn’t Work: Ed Wallis wants to be a football player; because of his personality at the beginning of the film he is rejected. But in one practice he seems to be accepted. I think that it was such a jump for a negative to a positive. The film didn’t really show Ed in a struggle, he just had to deal with the guy in his position and that went by too quick. It wasn’t what I expected and it was a bit disappointing to not see him step up to his teammate/bully.
Pay or Nay: Pay. I got to watch this film in New York City. To be honest, as I was watching the movie and was getting into the theme, I forgot that I was in the loudest, craziest city in America. It was just the story and myself, I was getting sucked into the film. I love films like that and I think most people enjoy that too. That in the immense abundance of moving people, there are places where you can watch something that will take you away from all the stress in your life and give you peace. This film will take you through an up and down journey, you will laugh and you might cry. You might not even like where or how the journey finishes. But when you reach the end, it is not about where or how you ended it, it’s about the journey that you took. This film will take you through an unforgettable trip.
Rated: R for language, some sexual material and violence
Release Date: September 25, 2015
Screenplay: Tony McNamara
Director(s): Tony McNamara
Starring: Mickey Rourke, Natt Wolff, Emma Roberts, Sarah Silverman
Distributor: Paramount Pictures
Film Genre: Comedy