Damsels in Distress
Telling the story of three slightly superficial college girls that attend a predominately male university and have a mistaken grip on reality, Whit Stillman's Damsels in Distress definitely has its moments. But the story itself lacks much pizzaz or purpose, leaving me unsatisfied and underwhelmed as I left the theater.
Greta Gerwig gives a triumphant performance as Violet, the ring leader of the sheltered trio. Her delivery is spot on as she attempts to rescue her peers from the likes of depression, grunge, and other low standards of life that she is nowhere near competent enough to counsel on. Violet's personality is one of strong self-confidence and maturity. She states every opinion as matter-of-fact, and her friend's acceptance brings about much of the passive comedy that helps drive Damsels.
A strong supporting cast that features minor roles by the likes of Adam Brody and Aubrey Plaza help give the film an overall sense of strength, though in the end the story hinders it from reaching the status that someone like Violet would expect. A blundered story that never drives home its central point leave many on the outside, cautiously looking in as they are cautious as to the girl's next move.
It is hard to resist the temptation that comes with moronic frat boys, humorous depression jokes, and a new dance crazy known as the Saambola, but skipping Damsels in Distress won't likely eliminate you from any cooler talk. If it does, you're likely at the wrong party.