Laggies is an independent comedy starring Keira Knightly as Meg, a young woman who’s not prepared to grow up. It’s a gender twist on arrested development comedies, which usually center around an immature man and perhaps his enabling mother. In this movie, it’s Meg’s dad who’s happy for her to never grow up and always need him.
When her longtime boyfriend proposes, Meg panics and claims she’ll be at a seminar for a week, to give herself time to adjust. She spends the week instead hanging out with a high school girl she befriended, Annika (Chloë Grace Moretz) and the girl’s divorce lawyer dad (Sam Rockwell).
Things I liked: Meg still hangs out with the same friend group since high school, and it kind of sucks. Usually that type of relationship continuity is portrayed as loving stability,but for Meg it represents her being stuck in a rut.
I loved how Meg didn’t really fit in with Annika’s friend. When she ends up at a high school party, she gets a mixed reaction. Some cheer her on as she pierces a boy’s ear with a needle and ice cube, but others object to her age and one girl “just discovered” an artist Meg had grown up listening to.
I really appreciated that Meg’s journey isn’t centered around a romance. It’s about her figuring out who she is and what makes her happy, not about finding a man who made her grow up (as is typical in male led immaturity movies like Failure to Launch).
Things I didn’t like: The pacing drags a bit in the middle, with most of the best lines in the first and final acts. The secondary characters are simplistic and not fully formed. The ending took some short cuts so that we are told about but don’t see a certain plot resolution.
Overall I liked this movie, especially the twist on a typical story form. Meg is a flawed yet relatable lead, and Annika’s character is one of the more kind and honest portrayals of teen girlhood. There are plenty of funny lines and moments. Although there are romance storylines for both, I wouldn’t call this a romantic comedy. The friendship between them gets at least as much screen time.
This movie passes Bechdel and the Sexy Lamp Test. Alcohol, sex, and some mature content means I wouldn’t recommend watching it as a family with children under 15. It’s definitely aimed at young adults who feel stuck in between childhood and growing up.