“Drinking Buddies”: The Connection Between Alcohol and Sex Explored at Last

Which came first — the chronic alcoholism or the proximity to huge quantities of beer? This particular question is left unexplored in Joe Swanberg's otherwise thoughtfully funny Drinking Buddies, but the fact that Kate (Olivia Wilde) and Luke (Jake Johnson) work in a brewery and have a tendency to get high on their own supply doesn't help — especially Kate, who seems to consume twice her body weight in beer on a daily basis, and can more than keep up with her co-worker bros on their post-work bar runs. Meanwhile, Kate's boyfriend Chris (Ron Livingston) and Luke's girlfriend Jill (Anna Kendrick) are more casual drinkers, and on a weekend double-date getaway, all four begin to wonder if they're with the right person. Desire, jealousy, and wanderlust are things that impact all couples, but being a booze hound doesn't help, and no matter how sexy and fun and (Olivia) Wilde they might be, the drunk's life is still a mess, filled with couches bearing unexpected nails. Drinking Buddies has that modern, semi-improvised indie feel, which allows Wilde's and especially Kendrick's personalities to shine through. The picture also manages to avoid being either too sentimental or (more dangerously) too quirky, instead staying in the real world, the one where you can't Instagram with your mind just yet.

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