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That Awkward Moment review

Sexism and the city...

If Hollywood tends to gear romcoms towards women, writer/director Tom Gormican clearly didn’t read the brief. A date movie that both sexes will want to see, That Awkward Moment centres on three twentysomethings who, on the surface, are looking for anything but a relationship.

Leading the pack is book jacket designer Jason (Zac Efron), who starts the film by telling us “that awkward moment” is when a girl says “So…” before asking a question like “Where is this relationship going?” In agreement is colleague Daniel (Miles Teller), a smart-mouthed player who uses his female friends to help pick up girls in bars.

When their married friend Mikey (Michael B. Jordan) splits from his wife, the trio make a vow to stay single – but when Jason meets Ellie (Imogen Poots), he starts to fall for her just as Mikey and Daniel both find themselves drawn to other women.

Gormican’s script is the film’s big strength; the dialogue fizzes while the set-pieces pay off handsomely. One scene where Jason puts new meaning into a ‘cocktail party’ is particularly amusing – even if Gormican is guilty of flushing too much toilet humour through his dick-flick.

Efron looks at home playing an asshole with charm – but by far the most engaging is Teller. It’s not perfect, but giving the romcom a male makeover takes a certain amount of balls, and That Awkward Moment does it with panache.

Verdict:

A box-fresh comedy both real and romantic, That Awkward Moment rarely has any of its own. Date night sorted, then...

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Freelance writer

James Mottram is a freelance film journalist, author of books that dive deep into films like Die Hard and Tenet, and a regular guest on the Total Film podcast. You'll find his writings on GamesRadar+ and Total Film, and in newspapers and magazines from across the world like The Times, The Independent, The i, Metro, The National, Marie Claire, and MindFood.