Charlize Theron, Patton Oswalt, Patrick Wilson, Elizabeth Reaser, Collette Wolfe, Hettienne Park, J. K. Simmons and Louisa Krause.
Here is another interesting movie by one of my favorite working directors, Jason Reitman and a screenplay by Diablo Cody who surprised the world and me with her brilliant debut as a writer with Juno. Reitman made Up in the Air which was my most favorite movie of 2009 and also Juno and Thank You for Smoking which were good movies too. Young Adult may not be one of his significant work yet but it is truly something, most of for a remarkable performance by Theron and a good work yet again from Diablo Cody.
So Mavis Gary (Charlize Theron) is a 37 year old divorced woman living in Minneapolis and is a writer of a Young Adult novel series. She is on a deadline and has to write last few chapters of the soon to be ended novels. Mavis is very self-absorbed kind of a woman, it is somewhat depicted in the very beginning of the movie with her lifestyle. Mavis seems to have not grown up still, she still wants those High School days to come back or should i say believes that they can. What she does is pack her bags and goes to her hometown, the fictitious Mercury, Minnesota to get back her high school love even though he is married with a kid on its way. Mavis meets Matt (Patton Oswalt) at a bar, he is her former classmate who she barely remembers. Matt tells her how stupid and insane her plan is to destroy Buddy's marriage. But for her its the other way around, its like she doesn't even know or care that she'll destroy someones marriage and a unborn child's life. She is still a teenager in the form of an adult, she doesn't know how real life works, how things go on, how relationships works or what responsibilities means. You can't help it but feel bad for Mavis, she is like a child lost in the world. Her actions comes off as very stupid and annoying, her ideas are ridiculous and you feel more and more uncomfortable as the movie goes on but still, there is that part of you that wants to see things worked out for Mavis.
Charlize Theron gave one of the best performance from last year, she is very funny, believable and perfect in her role. Charlize gives her character enough depth and humane sense that makes it work for us and its often sad seeing her go through all this. Its painful to watch how the world reacts to Mavis, though immature in her actions, she is always misread. For every reaction, there is always an action before and people seems to ignore that. Charlize Theron shines her, she is almost breathtaking in most of the scenes she does. Patton Oswalt on the other hand was the surprise in this movie, he performed so good here. In one of the scenes he truly outdone himself when he is trying to knock some sense into Mavis. And that little get together both of them do after Mavis gets miserable is very funny but painful to watch.
The screenplay is written very well but it seriously didn't had that spark Juno had. Young Adult is very dark, painful and funny comedy and isn't for everyone unless you like depressing comedies. Letting go of ones youth can be difficult, but for your own sake, you have to grow up one day or the other.