Friday, September 30, 2022

Bros - Review


The newest trend with the last decade or so of romcoms is to call attention to the fact that it’s a romcom. A lot of them can’t balance that self-referential tone, but quite a few have turned that consciousness into something snappy and satisfying. Bros leans fully into the machinations of the genre, almost dipping into meta territory, and brilliantly showcases the skills of its star and co-writer, Billy Eichner.

Following in the footsteps of numerous rom-coms before it, Bros centers around a self-doubting, proud and single Bobby Lieber. A curator for the new LGBTQ+ history museum in New York City, Bobby finds out a little more about himself and meets a lawyer named Aaron, and the romantic comedy promptly gets underway. 

Before eyes meet across the crowded club of sweat and neon, the audience gets to meet Bobby and understand his character. Bobby is very much an imitation of Billy Eichner’s own TV persona, and Bros feels all the more personal for it. Eichner, together with director Nicholas Stoller, wrote the screenplay that is so effortlessly funny and sweet while also having some things to say. It echoes Bobby’s belief that gay relationships are not the same as straight ones, and in doing so, illustrates a different perspective on the absurdity of the dating scene. 

There’s a breezy likability to Bros. Director Nicholas Stoller is no stranger to studio comedies, his resume include numerous directorial outings in the genre, but the combination of his sensibilities with Eichner’s makes for a winning combination. Eichner clearly has a lot to express here, and the way Bros juxtaposes its romcom origins through the lens of a gay relationship is absolutely perfect at times. The usual trappings of a romantic comedy play out as expected, but they’re often followed by a twist or a turn that feels very specific to Eichner’s own experiences. 

Bros speeds along for most of the runtime, working through it s comedic asides and relationship markers on its way to a familiar conclusion. It makes the film insanely easy to watch, if not a little breakneck when it does want to start wrapping up. The montages can be more cliche than the subversiveness of its other beats throughout the film, but it’s never enough to drag down the overall charming nature.

From the start, Billy Eichner has been adamant that Bros is different. And as the first studio, theatrically released romcom with a gay relationship at its center and gay actors playing them, it does feel different. It can fall into similar tropes and cliches as other romcoms, but Eichner and Stoller put enough of a spin on those familiar beats that it never feels stale. Bros feels fresh because of it, and becomes another example of what can happen when you let people tell their own story. 

No comments :

Post a Comment