Release date: Nov. 26, 2021 (all theaters Dec. 25, 2021)
Director: Paul Thomas Anderson
Screenplay: Paul Thomas Anderson
Ah, the 70s! A decade full of wonder, sex, boobs, drugs and rock & roll… all things that the new film, Licorice Pizza, which takes place in the 1970s, lacked! This movie was super lame plot-wise, aesthetic wise and just all way around-wise!
Licorice Pizza was advertised as this psychedelic 70s love story and I was super excited because…I’m a sappy girl! So you have to understand the disappointment I felt when this movie just sucked ass!
First off, the whole idea that this took place in the 70s wasn’t necessarily lost, but it was done poorly — you could tell what decade it was because of the clothing and some interior designing but it wasn’t anything special. The reason I really like movies that take place in the 60s and 70s is that they give off this magical energy that really brings you back in time and this movie didn’t have that.
Not only did Licorice Pizza flop in the visual side of the 70s but it missed the music mark! If you are making a movie that takes place in the 1970s you better have the BEST soundtrack of all times otherwise you should not be allowed — I don’t make the rules that’s just how it has to be!
Now the music itself was not horrible music, but for the purpose of making a movie that took place during the years of sex, drugs and rock & roll, songs by Nina Simon and Johnny Guarnieri just were not doing it for me.
When you look at Dazed and Confused, the music is what takes that movie from being good to being GREAT with songs by Foghat, Black Sabbath, Alice Cooper and even The Runaways. The movie was so boring I thought the music would be my saving grace and I was horribly wrong.
Once again going back to Dazed and Confused, you know how that movie doesn’t have like one single plot and it’s just a bunch of kids doing random cool shit and then they all come together for a cool party at the end? That was what screenwriter/director Paul Thomas Anderson of Licorice Pizza was going for but it bombed majorly!
There were so many random plot points that happened and then were never brought up ever again and didn’t even move the movie forward.
For example (mini/unimportant spoiler I guess), the main boy is randomly framed for a HORRIFIC murder for like five minutes, then the cops go, ‘Oop wrong person we got the right dude now…see ya!’ and that was that, nothing else about it came up or even mattered.
The love story was also just awful! First, the main guy, Gary, is 15-years-old and the main gal, Alana, is 25-years-old…yep you just read that right so the movie starts off uncomfortable! But to make the love story worse, Gary is a grade-A asshole!
He starts off being just kinda shy, as most boys are, but then he just turns into a giant douchebag creep who sells waterbeds (another weird-ass plot point).
The whole love line is just awkward and hard to watch and that is coming from the most awkward person in the world! Everyone wants to have a romance from a movie like The Notebook or Better Off Dead but NOBODY wants to have a love like Gary and Alana.
There was only one part of this movie that was awesome and entertaining and it was when Bradly Cooper showed up as Barbra Streisand’s then-lover, Jon Peters. He showed up, broke some shit, did some karate and that was that — iconic.
Bradly Cooper was not the only big name in this movie though which was a little off the wall. Maya Rudolph was in it for a total of 30 seconds which was weird and then out of NOWHERE Sean Penn showed up and did a flip on a motorcycle and left — that was kinda cool too but like, it threw me off my rhythm!
Finally, my biggest complaint was that there was no cocaine in this movie! Okay before you question my sanity just hear me out! In movies like Pulp Fiction and Boogie Nights, there is something really interesting to me about the large amount of cocaine that is used to tell the story and how dramatic it is — it’s very cinematically pleasing!
But for being a 70s movie I guess I just wanted like one small cocaine scene…for the drama and the aesthetic!
Overall, this movie was just all over the place and was B-O-R-I-N-G — the total run time was 2 hours and 13 minutes and it felt like a lifetime. The aesthetic was underwhelming, the music made me sad and the plot…well there really wasn’t one if you think about it! It was very apparent that Paul Thomas Anderson was really trying to create a perfect 70s movie that had aspects from similar classics such as Boogie Nights, Dazed and Confused and Taxi Driver but he just didn’t do it — this movie gets a 1/5 simply for effort.
You can go check this movie out in theaters if you don’t believe me but honestly don’t waste your time. On the plus side though, my best friend, Nancy, and I went to this movie and got to take our picture in front of the Jackass Forever cutout at the theater which was kinda worth it all.