Set It Up may just be the film needed to get the romantic comedy genre going again with delightful performances from Zoey Deutch and Glen Powell that make the film so fun to watch.
Aspiring sportswriter Harper (Zoey Deutch) and Charlie (Glen Powell) aren’t the typical assistants working in a New York City skyscraper. They don’t make enough money for the hours they work. It gets worse for the two because their bosses, investment banking executive Rick (Taye Diggs) and former sports reporter Kirsten (Lucy Liu), are both single. This means that the two of them have their hands full. How are they expected to have any kind of free time when their bosses don’t have any reason to take time off.
Harper and Charlie decide that the next best thing to do is to become a matchmaker. They come up with a plan to trap both their bosses in the elevator together. This subsequently leads to the two of them unknowing sitting near each other at Yankee Stadium. While the two are spying on their bosses, there’s a bit of a conversation about women who like sports (We exist!) The romance between Rick and Kirsten paves the way for the two to spend more time together.
While the two of them keep their tabs on what Rick and Kristen are doing, it means spending more time together. In trying to get their bosses to start dating, the two develop a relationship of their own. It’s predictable, of course, but that doesn’t mean it’s not going to be fun to watch. It doesn’t matter that Charlie has a girlfriend, Suze (Joan Smalls). Suze is largely forgotten, no surprise there!
There’s plenty of supporting characters from Harper’s roommate, Becca (Meredith Hagner) and her fiance (Jon Rudnitsky) to Charlie’s middle school teacher roommate, Duncan (Pete Davidson)
What helps make Set It Up so fun to watch is the on-screen chemistry between it’s leading actors. Zoey Deutch, already having a phenomenal year on screen, and Glen Powell have some great chemistry together. It would be nice to see the two work together in future projects. The film is so fun and delightful that you can’t help but hope that Netflix approves a sequel.
I can’t say enough good things about Zoey’s performance here during an outstanding year for the actress. She killed it in Flower this past March and is also appearing in The Year of Spectacular Men this weekend. She’s already a star in the making and her career is only going to get bigger and better.
Romantic comedies live and die by the acting performances. If you don’t have solid lead actors with great chemistry, a film won’t work. Give credit to veteran director Claire Scanlon in bringing first-time feature screenwriter Katie Silberman’s screenplay to the screen. The film can get messy at times but but the performances help to overcome any flaws.
It certainly doesn’t hurt that NYC is as much a character as the characters in the film are. The film is a throwback to a lot of classic rom-coms so having the production designer of When Harry Met Sally, Jane Musky, on board really helps. Cinematographer Matthew Clark brings a visual style that feels very reminiscent to the 1940s!
With enjoyable performances from its actors, Set It Up will set you up for a fun time.
DIRECTOR: Claire Scanlon
SCREENWRITER: Katie Silberman
CAST: Glen Powell, Zoey Deutch, Lucy Liu, Pete Davidson, Tituss Burgess, with Taye Diggs
Netflix launches Set It Up on June 15, 2018.