Most 16 year-olds are plagued by the slings and arrows of adolescent angst – few of those 16 year-olds will voluntarily admit themselves into a psych ward. Both adapted and directed by filmmakers Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, It’s Kind Of A Funny Story stars Keir Gilchrist, Zach Galifianakis, Emma Roberts, and Viola Davis and opens nationwide this weekend.

Check out the review below…

The Players:

The Plot:

It’s 5 a.m. in Brooklyn when 16 year-old Craig (Gilchrist) checks himself into Argenon Hospital and is quickly admitted by a psychiatrist (Davis) for five days. The youth ward is temporarily closed for construction so he’s stuck in the adult ward with a wide range of lunatics, including Bobby (Galifianakis) and Noelle (Roberts). Craig’s brief  taste of the cuckoo’s nest inspires unexpected friendships and encourages him to keep his “problems” in perspective.

The Good:

  • Universal Appeal: Craig, a teenager, is the central focus of the film. But the film’s message resonates with a wider age demographic because everyone relates to a rocky adolescence in some capacity. The movie, quite poignantly, speaks to your inner teen – the anxiety, the awkwardness, the pressure to fit in, the journey of self-identity, etc. Craig’s story, without a doubt, will activate memories of your  high school experience.
  • Humor: It takes a combination of good writing, acting and directing to couple humor and drama in the same scene without one angle diminishing or upstaging the other. We ultimately find that Craig is troubled, yes, but he mistakes his “extreme depression” for fairly standard adolescent anguish. The people he’s surrounded by in the psych ward, however, are legitimately suffering. When these characters (specifically Bobby and Noelle) disclose their respective “disorders” we sympathize appropriately.  But both characters toss in a bit sarcasm or silliness that lightens the weight of their situations –  the whole “laughing while crying” concept that many filmmakers aim for but few really nail. Overall, these moments reemphasize a major theme of the film: to work with your circumstances and make the best of a bad situation.
  • Zach Galifianakis: He’s his usual hilarious self, fear not – but he has a number of super dramatic moments. And he nails them. Who knew the guy had such emotional range? Bravo.

The Bad:

  • I’m racking my brain – but I have no solid, negative commentary. I thoroughly enjoyed this film.

Overall:

It’s a very family-style film, spiked with great humor and relevant themes.

Rating: 8/10

It’s Kind of a Funny Story will be in theaters October 8th!

Photo Gallery:

Are you excited to see Galifianakis in the lead?