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Save the Date

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Save the Date
Directed by Michael Mohan
IFC Films
Opens December 14, IFC Center

Unremarkable, thinly sketched characters, many adorned with creative careers or hobbies, populate the romantic dramedy Save the Date, yet another unfocused movie about generic relationship quandaries. Bookstore manager Sarah (Lizzy Caplan) fills sketchbooks with cartoons detailing intimate episodes, including those with boyfriend Kevin (Geoffrey Arend)—the lead singer of Wolfbird, who chases her away for good when he proposes to her at a show—and Jonathan (Mark Webber), the aspiring marine biologist who next shares her bed. (Sarah's drawings are by graphic novelist Jeffrey Brown, who co-wrote the script with Egan Reich and director Michael Mohan.) Marriage-averse Sarah is frequently upbraided by her sister, Beth (Alison Brie), whose only profession seems to be obsessing over the details of her upcoming wedding to Wolfbird drummer Andrew (Martin Starr). Mohan, fond of the '70s-cinema slow zoom, strains for the organic oddness of the romantically adrift adults of that era. But despite the best efforts of a largely agreeable cast (Starr especially), this quintet consists of inert, late-twenties simulacra. Even worse, the roles of three of STD's stars recall those they played in films released earlier this year—Caplan in Bachelorette, Webber in For a Good Time, Call . . ., and Brie in The Five-Year Engagement—reminding us of how many times these appointments have been circled before. Melissa Anderson

 
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