The To Do List Movie Review

The To Do List TheToDoList-OneSht copy

Starring: Aubrey Plaza, Johnny Simmons, Bill Hader, Connie Britton, Clark Gregg, Alia Shawkat, Sarah Steele, Scott Porter, Rachel Bilson, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Andy Samberg, Donald Glover

Directed by: Maggie Carey

Rated: R

Run Time:

Genre: Comedy/ Romance

Opens July 26th


By Lisa Minzey of The Reel


Hey Phoenix Film Fans!  If you’re looking for a comedy to check out this weekend, opening in theaters is a film from award winning writer/ director Maggie Carey. “The To Do List” is Carey’s first feature film and packs in an impressive cast, lead by Aubrey Plaza, Bill Hader and Rachel Bilson.


In the great year that was 1993, overachiever Brandy Klark (Aubrey Plaza) has just graduated from high school and is eager to get started on her preparations for college. Her friends Fiona (Alia Shawkat) and Wendy (Sarah Steele) try to get Brandy to loosen up some and reminder her of her lack of dating experience during her high school years.

That night at a graduation party, Brandy has a run in with an older college guy, Rusty Waters (Scott Porter), igniting a dormant feeling of lust within her. After that night, fueled with determination, Brandy creates a to do list of sexual experiences she needs to have before leaving for college.

In her quest to shed her good girl/ virginal image, Brandy looks to the guys from her circle   to start off on her list. Her study partner Cameron (Johnny Simmons)  has been in love with her for most of their high school career, so when Brandy starts to experiment with him, he interprets that they are now an item. Brandy thinks nothing of it as she still has her eye on Rusty and will do anything to capture his attention. Will Brandy be able to accomplish her goal of finishing all the items on her list or will the so called harmless hook ups do more harm than good?

With any coming of age teenage sexual comedies, there is a certain level one would expect of awkwardness that is expected. For example, if you saw the movie “Sex Drive” or “American Pie” there’s a certain amount of raunchiness and uncomfortable situations that really enhance the comedic element of the film. Writer/ Director Maggie Carey tops the aforementioned films and takes it about 5 levels high in terms of uncomfortable humor with the amount of sexual terms, bodily fluid used and sexual situations scenes. Let’s just say, in an attempt to keep this spoiler free, you definitely need to leave the kids at home for this one and may not want to see with your parents or Grandma as it gets truly awkward. There were several times I had to look away from getting grossed out  by the vomit and bodily emissions, but it is done in good taste, without the use of any nudity.

Aside from the gross out/ awkward comedy, this film is fun to reminisce to as the details are spot on. From the props, to the costumes to the music, I found myself recognizing stuff I had when I was that age and being reminded of songs I loved. Aubrey Plaza is the perfect choice for the role of Brandy as her deadpan, sarcastic delivery is so spot on. This is a film you want to see at least once because it will be a topic of water cooler discussion. If you’re a fan of Plaza or any of the other cast members, check out “The To Do List” when it opens in theaters nationwide starting Friday July 26,2013.