First off, unbeknownst to some, ambivalence isn’t the lack of an opinion, in fact it’s the opposite as it reflects the inability to choose between opposite opinions, and that’s the dilemma I face with Struck By Lightning. A star-studded cast (for this budget), this “Easy-A“/Jude Apatowian-esque indie struggles to really make you care as it attempts to dig into a realistic reveal of high school live but unfortunately stays mainly on the surface. The story starts off with our leading
lady man, Chris Colfer getting (wait for it) struck by lightning. The story told is Colfer looking back on his life and particularly the last few months of school as he blackmails his way into success at a school that otherwise laughs at him. Trying to get into I think Northwestern University (honestly, I don’t even remember anymore, it’s not that important), the lead finds himself surrounded by high school cliches and an unaiding family life that has him struggling.
Really, that’s all you need to know to decide if you want to see it. I have a hard time knowing who I’d recommend this movie to. I suppose if you are 16 and questioning your sexuality and wanting to break out of your small town Anywhere, USA, then go for it- otherwise you’ll likely be pretty much bored to tears. That said, there are a couple of odd additions that made this thing viewable to the end: Allison Janney and Rebel Wilson. Chris Colfer is famous for “Glee” and “Glee” alone and will likely keep it that way as even when he doesn’t play “a gay character” as he KIND of is not suppose to be in this one, his speech and mannerisms get in the way of you thinking of him in any other way. Janney and Wilson must have owed this kid a favour because they actually managed to bring it in their slightly limited parts with Janney stealing the show as the only true actor on screen who portrays an emotionally stunted alcoholic with the perfect blend of humour and maudlin.
Nothing at all original happens in this movie: nothing is even that funny. Wilson is her usual ad-libbing and big girl who don’t give a shit self which does make for a few funny moments. The problem with this movie is not even the acting really (though Colfer is distracting as you hate him the entire movie despite the fact he’s the protagonist), but it’s that Colfer wrote it himself and is not a kid anymore. While I don’t actually know the kid’s age- and don’t care enough to look it up- he is NOT in touch with today’s youth and it comes across hard when you watch how these students are scripted to interact and speak with one another. Where “Easy A” sounded relevant and current, this film sounds like your mom wrote it- and not a regular, a lame mom. Everything comes across as awkward and nothing is believable when it seems to want to come across that way.
I call my review of this one ambivalent because Wilson and Janney are too good of comedy actors to just throw this whole thing in the toilet so I’m allowing that there might be some good moments for you to enjoy. Do give the trailer a look and decide on your own and don’t let me ruin this for you if it ends up being your cup of tea. When you have watched it, please comment below and let me know what you think as I’m struggling to find anyone who’s seen this one so far!