It's been quite a while since I've tackled an independent romantic comedy, but I heard a lot of things, good and bad, about Lola Versus, so why the hell not, right? And on Blu-ray no less. Lola Versus has a peculiar title, because it's whatever you want it to be. It's Lola vs. The World, Lola vs. Friends, Lola vs. Family, Lola vs. Life, etc. It's literally anything you want it to be as long as you insert "Lola vs." into the equation.
Lola (Greta Gerwig) is about to hit the big-30, is engaged to Luke (Joel Kinnaman) and lives in New York City. What can possibly go wrong? Well, for starters, Luke calls of the wedding and Lola crumples and finds herself in a crap sandwich. Fortunately for Lola, her best friend Alice (Zoe Lister-Jones) is there to prop her back up and get her inspired to move on with her life post-break up.
This is easier said than done, because Lola isn't necessarily the typical girl who can just pick up and move along. She must reflect on herself and reflect on those around her. I'm all for reflection and what not, but not when it's this self-serving. Did I mention that Lola as a character isn't all that likable? This is what cripples Lola Versus, because we, as the audience, have to follow her through this journey (she is our protagonist after all), but she's not really worth the effort.
It was all bubble gum and lollipops when the film started, but once she has to get on with her life, just about every scene with her came off as whiny and bratty. Bill Pullman and Debra Winger make appearances as her parents, with Bill Pullman being especially hysterical, and Winger too. Alice, Luke, and even Lola's best friend, Henry (Hamish Linklater), who may or may not have always liked her, are all more interesting characters than Lola is. Another thing that I also couldn't get over was that Lola is especially well off. She's a grad student working on her thesis, lives in an awesome Manhattan loft, and gets to do much of nothing throughout the day (take yoga), but has no job. I'm all for being independently wealthy, but if you're going that route, it'd be nice to show how that person became wealthy. Granted, Lola's mom does own a restaurant in Manhattan, so it comes to the uber-hipster way of being. Look poor on the outside, while having a fat bank account that is supported by mommy and daddy. This is why I cannot build sympathy towards Lola as a character. That, and she is a constant whiner. I hate whiners.
As I mentioned before, Lola is really the problem with the film, but Lola's friend and family are super cool and make the whole thing a bit more bearable. The movie doesn't even run a full 90-minutes, which is cool, in that any more time with Lola would have had me running for the hills.
Lola Versus is now available on Blu-ray.
Lola Versus is presented in 1080p, 1.85:1 widescreen. Shot on digital, Lola Versus looks mighty impressive on Blu-ray. Flesh tones look exquisite; colors are bold and beautiful without any hints of banding. It takes on an almost pastel appearance when everyone is outside, but it doesn't even mute all that much during scenes taking place indoors. There may be a scene or two of minor edge enhancement, but these scenes neither ruin the image nor distract much.
Lola Versus is presented in DTS-HD MA 5.1. It's a dialogue driven film and the sonics will not disappoint. It's front and center, with the added hipster-indie rock tunes taking over the other channels in full blast, without distorting the main stage. Ambient sounds were also pleasant as they broadcasted the subtle nuances that Manhattan had to offer. It was a pleasant, but very effective lossless surround sound audio track.
Surprising enough, Lola Versus come packed to the brim with plenty of special features that will satiate even the most extra-starved fans of the Blu-ray format. We've got commentaries, deleted scenes, outtakes, featurettes, interviews, alternate endings, etc. Man, they really do go all out for romantic comedies don't they.
Lola Versus has some really funny moments, but those are usually at the expense of the supporting cast. Bill Pullman handled these moments the best. The Blu-ray looks and sounds terrific and the special features package included will satisfy even the most hardcore Blu-ray aficionado. In the end for me, Lola as a character was not all that interesting. If they ever make a sequel I hope it follows the rest of the supporting cast instead.