Jan Wahl Movie Review: ‘Lovelace,’ ‘The Spectacular Now’ & ‘We’re the Millers’

Listen To Entertainment Reporter Jan Wahl, Fridays at 8:53am & 4:53pm On KCBS All News 740AM | 106.9FM
Shailene Woodley & Miles Teller (credit: A24)

Shailene Woodley & Miles Teller (credit: A24)

(KCBS) — KCBS Entertainment Editor Jan Wahl reviews “Lovelace” starring Amanda Seyfried as Deep Throat’s Linda Lovelace,”The Spectacular Now” with Miles Teller as a high-school boy whose life is an endless party often fueled by booze and “Meet the Millers” with Jennifer Aniston about a drug dealer’s misadventures in Mexico.

KCBS Entertainment Reporter Jan Wahl:

Jan Wahl Movie Review: The Spectacular Now, Lovelace & We're The Millers


Between ‘The Spectacular Now’ and “The Way, Way Back”—two of the summer’s great coming-of-age movies—this one is the best. We get to know a charismatic, energetic high school boy, played with wit and swagger by Miles Teller. Life for him is an endless party, lived in the now and often fueled by booze. He’s easy to like, as Shalene Woodley finds out. She played George Clooney’s oldest daughter in “The Descendents” (2011) and she displays, yet again, her talent for playing quiet pain.

Based on the novel by Tim Tharp and directed with simplicity and strength by James Ponsoldt, we connect with these characters because they are worth caring about. There’s also a message about running from life and into a bottle that touches all ages.

janwahlhats 04 Jan Wahl Movie Review: Lovelace, The Spectacular Now & Were the Millers

Four hats.


Amanda Seyfried as Linda Lovelace (credit: RADiUS-TWC)

Amanda Seyfried as Linda Lovelace (credit: RADiUS-TWC)


Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman, the Oscar-winning San Francisco filmmaking team, tell us the story of a young woman who tried to find her own voice through degradation and abuse—Deep Throat’s Linda Lovelace.

Amanda Seyfried shows courage and fine acting as Lovelace, joined by an impressive cast including Hank Azaria, Chris Noth, Bobby Cannavale, Sharon Stone and Peter Sarsgaard as a vicious sadist. The one misfire is James Franco, who’s completely miscast as Hugh Hefner. The rest of the movie, however, works on every level.

janwahlhats 03 Jan Wahl Movie Review: Lovelace, The Spectacular Now & Were the Millers

Three hats.


(L-R) Emma Roberts, Jennifer Aniston, Will Poulter & Jason Sedakis (credit: New Line Cinema/Warner Bros.)

(L-R) Emma Roberts, Jennifer Aniston, Will Poulter & Jason Sedakis (credit: New Line Cinema/Warner Bros.)


Why is it that Jennifer Aniston doesn’t fight for better roles or make better films? She has the power and clout in Hollywood. Does it have to be as stupid and offensive as ‘We’re the Millers’? I’m always looking for comedy, but almost any other comedy is better than this adolescent story of an ignorant drug dealer and his misadventures in Mexico. Wait for DVD. Wait a long time.


Movies To See Right Now: The Way Way Back, Blue Jasmine, 20 Feet from Stardom, Fruitvale Station, Red 2 & The Wolverine

Home Viewing/DVD: The Bling Ring, The Internship, SOMM & Jack Benny: The Lost Episodes

You can hear KCBS Entertainment Editor Jan Wahl’s movie reviews on KCBS All News 740AM and 106.9FM Fridays at 8:53am & 4:53pm.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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