Anna Roisman is a comedian, writer, actor, creator, producer, and host in NYC. Anna is the host of HQ Words, a word puzzle game from the creators of HQ Trivia. Anna’s work has been featured in the Tribeca Film Festival, New York TV Festival, Just For Laughs in Montreal, People magazine, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Funny Or Die, Huffington Post, Elite Daily, and more. She is the creator of The Unemployed Show and co-producer and host of Quickie Fest: The One Minute Movie Festival in NYC. Anna hosts the live comedy shows, “Revival” and “Fashion Puhleeze,” and sings with The Losers Lounge at Joe’s Pub & City Winery. For reels, press, and information, check out AnnaRoisman.com.
My love and appreciation for this movie is not at all described by the title: It’s Complicated. It’s actually pretty clear that I love this movie, because I watch it anytime it’s on TV. (Yes, I still pay for cable, and I’m proud.) This movie does seem to be complicated for a lot of other people! Particularly my boyfriend, who seems to be bothered by the fact that I set the DVR to record this movie a few weeks ago. I believe he said something along the lines of, “Why on earth are you recording a movie from 2009 that has commercials airing every two minutes?” To be fair, it’s none of his business. I responded with, “It’s an incredible movie and it gives me hope for the future!” And that is why I felt the need to defend myself. Not only to him, but to everyone who forgets about this great movie. Because there are a lot of you out there!
It’s Complicated falls into that category of “forgotten gems” because every time I bring it up (which is often), someone says, “Oh, I forgot about that movie!” … And then they go on to describe the plot of Something’s Gotta Give, which is absolutely not the same movie. Sure, both of these films come from the brilliant mind of Nancy Meyers, but they are two very separate stories about sex-over-the-age-of-50 in a predominantly white, upper-class neighborhoods … lol. It’s Complicated is a classic romantic comedy about a messy family situation, starring a trifecta of powerhouse actors: Steve Martin, Alec Baldwin and Meryl Streep. It’s about a divorced couple, Streep and Baldwin, who hook up after their son’s college graduation and continue to do so until it gets … complicated. (Had to!) Steve Martin plays the new guy Meryl Streep dates in the movie, even though she’s still banging Baldwin. [Side note? “Banging Baldwin” has a really nice ring to it and may be the title of my next feature, so I’m claiming it now.]
This movie shows us a family with three grown kids whose parents had an ugly divorce years ago. But with the seductive concoction of being in a different city + hotel rooms + alcohol, the parents end up falling for each other again! Some may say this movie gives false hope to children of divorced families, but I say it gives them more hope! If more divorced couples saw how hot the relationship between Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin was, they might reconsider sex with their ex. Think about it like a math problem: If an affair was the thing that originally broke up your marriage, having an affair with each other this time cancels out the first tragedy. Two negatives (affairs) cancel out each other and become positive. That’s kind of the equation for this movie. Also, if that doesn’t win you over, Meryl’s character owns a bakery that gives the audience enough food porn to want to make out with an ex, or even a croissant! There’s really something for everyone in this film.
The plot thickens as Alec Baldwin’s character wants to continue sleeping with Meryl Streep, but she’s hesitant. Mostly because he cheated on her before (and we all know men don’t change.). But they continue hooking up and successfully hiding it from everyone they know, or so they think. Meryl Streep’s eldest daughter’s fiancé, played by John Krasinski, sees the couple at a hotel and realizes they’re sleeping together. But he knows that if he wants to be accepted into the family, he’d better stay quiet. Have you ever seen your in-laws do something bad, but you don’t want to blow up their spot because they sometimes take you to nice dinners? It’s family blackmail, essentially. So, I get his position in this situation. Now they have to like him! Because he can ruin their kids’ lives by telling them that their parents are hooking up for the first time in years.
Although this is a romcom, sex is like a superpower in this movie. Meryl Streep’s character didn’t have sex for 10 years, but then she did with her ex-husband and now she’s walking around town like a Marvel character. She’s dating, she’s baking, she’s cooking, she’s bragging. … She’s even smoking weed again and living her best life! It’s like sex was the gateway drug to living again. She’s not even self-conscious like she is in the beginning of the movie, when she goes for an eye-lift consultation and runs out afraid. Sex helps her feel hot and young again. She’s even getting more action than Alec Baldwin’s new wife (who he’s cheating on), played by Lake Bell. Lake Bell is barely clothed in any of the scenes she’s in, and yet this movie still makes you root for Meryl Streep because she is in her sexual prime.
Some of the reviews of this movie say it’s a typical romcom without any “big moments.” My question is, did they miss the part where Meryl and Steve Martin get super high with John Krasinski and then have the time of their lives on a dance floor? Did Alec Baldwin’s tan beefy body that goes into cardiac arrest not make you feel nervous? How about the part where Steve Martin tries to cyber-sex Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin lays his naked body down on the bed and gives Steve a full show by accident? Hilarious! When my boyfriend says to me, “Why are you so into old-people sex?” I explain that it gives me hope for my future as a woman who will one day be over 50 … and that Nancy Meyers taught me this. As a filmmaker, she shows us over and over again that sex is hot at any age. She defies Hollywood standards and gives us really funny, old-people porn!
So, check out this movie. And think about your life years from now and pray that you’ll be doing it as much as the actors in this movie are! I’d like to thank Nancy Meyers for making an affair the one thing I hope to have in my life, because it looks like so much fun, according to this movie. I always say, if there was one person in the world I’d like to brunch with, it’d probably be Nancy Meyers. And by brunch, I mean a meal at her stunning house in the Hamptons, where we’ll wear matching white turtlenecks and designer slacks, and we’ll compliment each other on our blow outs as we sip on mimosas and snack on homemade granola. Because that is probably how she attracts a man. And you know what? That doesn’t seem so complicated.