Don't Think Twice

The 2016 Seattle International Film Festival welcomed this entry from the USA. The introduction, "Let's hope and pray this one really IS a comedy," followed screenings of a "bloody grindhouse psycho thriller" and a "nightmarish creepy horror tale," on the second day of Week Three of SIFF Press Screenings. (I skipped the first two.)

Director/writer/actor Mike Birbiglia ("Sleepwalk With Me") gives us a peek into the world of Improv Comedy. This scripted dramedy features the members of a fictitious improv comedy troupe called "The Commons" which boasts six skilled members, each of whom is in the process of becoming an adult.

The cast:
  • Keegan-Michael Key ("Keanu") Jack has scene-stealing down to a science. But his attempts at loyalty have serious consequences.
  • Gillian Jacobs (Lots of TV) Samantha does voices, accents and is the MC for the troupe. "Has anyone here had a particularly bad day?"
  • Mike Birbiglia ("What I Should Have Said was Nothing") Miles finds it disconcerting to see how well some of his former students are faring.
  • Kate Micucci (Lots of TV) Allison is a pretty good improv player, but she REALLY wants to draw cartoons.
  • Tami Sagher (Lots of TV) plays Lindsay, a chronically stoned writer. This is funny because in "Real" life, Tami is a successful writer.
  • Chris Gethard (Lots of TV) Bill is distracted because his father wants to set him up with space for his troupe in a former strip club. (Their current space is scheduled for demolition.)
We come to know each of these ambitious New-York-based characters as they explore the bitterness, backstabbing, and lifelong friendships that occur behind the scenes.

I have a particular fondness for movies about show business, so I liked this one. By the way, the title comes from one of the standard rules for Improv.