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Chattanooga Film Fest 2023 "Sour Party" - movie review

In a world dominated by female-led and driven films, it's always exciting to see new releases that challenge traditional narratives and provide unique perspectives. SOUR PARTY, the latest comedy flick from the Sextons, offers an entertaining rollercoaster ride that keeps viewers engaged throughout. With a talented ensemble cast and amazing cameos, the film embraces the beloved elements of stoner comedies but falls short in terms of character development and its portrayal of brat culture. Nonetheless, SOUR PARTY manages to deliver a slick, well-paced, and funny film that leaves audiences wondering if they're truly in on the joke.

SOUR PARTY shines as a classic buddy comedy, taking our main characters Gwen (Samantha Westervelt) and James (Amanda Drexton) on a wild adventure filled with hilarious moments and unexpected twists. The chemistry between the two is palpable, creating an enjoyable dynamic that carries the film from start to finish. The comedic timing and witty dialogue keep the laughter flowing, providing plenty of entertainment value for fans of the genre.

Each talent in SOUR PARTY holds its own, showcasing its comedic skills and bringing its characters to life with charisma and charm. The ensemble cast effortlessly carries the film, ensuring that no scene falls flat due to lack of performance. While no particular standout performance emerges, the collective effort of the cast keeps the energy high and the humor intact.

One area where SOUR PARTY falls short is in its character development. Despite the whirlwind of events that the main characters find themselves in, the film fails to delve deep into their personal growth or transformation. As the story progresses, we yearn for more substantial development that would set them apart and make them more memorable. It's unfortunate that the potential for nuanced character arcs remains untapped, leaving us slightly unsatisfied.

In today's cinematic landscape, celebrating female leads and driven narratives is a crucial step toward greater inclusivity. However, SOUR PARTY's focus on the brat culture, while true to the roots of stoner comedies, feels somewhat unnecessary. While the film successfully taps into the themes that have traditionally worked in this genre, it doesn't add anything groundbreaking to the mix. It's a missed opportunity to explore more meaningful narratives that align with the current zeitgeist.

Watching SOUR PARTY feels like being invited into a secret club, but one that you may not necessarily want to be a part of. The film revels in the tropes and themes familiar to stoner comedies, providing the expected dose of fun and escapism. However, it lacks the innovation or distinctive qualities that would make it truly stand out among similar films. As a viewer, you keep waiting for that special moment that sets SOUR PARTY apart, only to find it never quite arrives.

SOUR PARTY is a slick, well-paced, and undeniably funny film that delivers on its promise of being an enjoyable buddy comedy. While it falls short in terms of character development and fails to break new ground, it manages to entertain with its quick-witted humor and energetic ensemble cast. While not everyone may feel fully invested in the "brat culture" showcased in the film, SOUR PARTY provides a solid dose of laughs and serves as a reminder of the enduring popularity of stoner comedies. Although it doesn't quite reach the heights of its potential, SOUR PARTY is still worth a watch for those seeking a lighthearted and amusing cinematic experience.


SOUR PARTY is directed by Amanda Drexton and Michael A. Drexton and stars

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