Trainwreck starts fabulously, with Dad (Colin Quinn) explaining to his young daughters why monogamy doesn’t work. It’s a great, self-contained skit; that makes sense, because Amy Schumer’s program is the best sketch-comedy series on TV right now. If only the rest of the movie were so blithely subversive. It’s packed with other, lesser skit ideas (the organizing concept is role-reversal – the women want to sleep around and the men want sensitivity and commitment), but everything serves director Judd Apatow’s conventional moral, which requires renouncing all non-traditional values and settling down to start a family. Seriously, Apatow makes Amy Schumer admit she’s a mess before she can land the guy and live happily ever after.
Knowing Apatow’s involvement and hearing interviews with Schumer, in which she praised his directorial and comic sensibility, I didn’t have high hopes for the film. I watched anyway, because of the always astonishing Brie Larson as Amy’s sister. Their scenes together are from a different (better) movie, unconcerned with upending rom-com tropes and out-grossing the boys. Sigh. I wish Nicole Holofcener had directed (she did the Last F**kable Day sketch on Schumer’s program.) That film might have been a classic.