Hooking Up Hits Familiar Beats With Fresh Story

Sam Richardson and Brittany Snow in Hooking Up. Courtesy of Saban Films.

Hooking Up manages to hit all the familiar romantic comedy beats while finding a way to freshen up the genre in the film.

Darla Beene (Brittany Snow) isn’t your typical writer for a lifestyle magazine.  No, the “Oprah of orgasms” is a sex addict.  It just so happens that her court-ordered sex addict support group shares a building with a cancer support group.  This is how Darla meets Bailey Brighton (Sam Richardson).  While the diagnosis has Bailey’s head in a different state of mind, he just broke up with his fiancé, Elizabeth (Anna Akana).  Mostly because Elizabeth couldn’t handle Bailey’s cancer diagnosis let alone the loss of his left nut.  Sure, Bailey recovers and goes back to working for his father at the gym but the relationship is over.

Darla’s problems only get worse when she’s fired from her role as a sex columnist.  Writing is the only thing she knows so you can only imagine how this will affect Darla.  The solution ends up being a road trip with Bailey.  This is exactly what they need to help clear their minds so to speak.  In doing so, they’re able to help each other in the process.

Thankfully, stars Brittany Snow and Sam Richardson have the needed chemistry to elevate the material at hand.  The American Dreams star is a great comic actor, which she’s shown off in the Pitch Perfect trilogy.  Some moments may be over the top but this is the sort of not-quite-raunchy comedy that we’ll need to survive a pandemic.  Sam Richardson is one of the greatest working comedic actors we have working today.  Hooking Up offers Richardson a leading role and hopefully, we’ll see the Veep star in more leading roles over the years to come.

Nico Raineau and Lauren Schacher do not shy away from the seriousness of its subject.  They tackle a cancer plot in a film while still finding the humor in the situation.  Similarly, we also see this with sex addiction.  While some of the humor does run along the edge, it never reaches the point of being too much.

While new offerings may be slim with theaters shut down, regular film goers could turn to familiar offerings on streaming media.  A film like Hooking Up gives you a way to watch something new while also supporting the independent film industry.  It’s these kind of films that need your support now more than ever.

Hooking Up may hit those familiar beats but this story never gets tired at all.

DIRECTOR:  Nico Raineau
SCREENWRITERS:  Nico Raineau and Lauren Schacher
CAST:  Brittany Snow, Sam Richardson, Anna Akana, Amy Pietz, with Jordana Brewster and Vivica A. Fox

Saban Films opens Hooking Up on Digital/VOD on March 20, 2020. Grade: 3.5/5

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.