The Renegade Rip

Cera and Dennings’ chemistry makes film a success

Kelly Ardis

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“Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist” is fun, exciting and relatable. The music could not be more fitting, and the casting is spot-on. The seamless marriage of all its elements makes the movie perfect.
Based on the book by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan, “Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist” follows Nick (Michael Cera), a recently dumped, sensitive musician, and Norah (Kat Dennings), a play-it-safe daughter of a famous music producer, on a never-ending first date.
They meet at a club where Nick’s band, The Jerk Offs, is playing, when Norah asks Nick to be her boyfriend for five minutes, to prove to her enemy, Tris, that she did not come alone.
Norah finds out a little too late that Nick is Tris’ ex-boyfriend, who, before meeting him, Norah felt she had a connection with based on the mix CDs he’d made for Tris, which she would liberate from the trashcan Tris threw them in.
The night continues when Nick agrees to help Norah get her drunk best friend, Caroline, home. But Nick’s bandmates have another idea. Tired of seeing Nick mope around, they decide to take care of Caroline to give the potential relationship between Nick and Norah a chance to bloom.
What ensues is a night of ups and downs, confusing exes and search parties. Before they can find their favorite band, Where’s Fluffy?, who have left clues around the city as to where they will be playing, they have to find Caroline, who has escaped The Jerk Offs’ van. Nick encounters a regretful Tris and Norah meets up with her on-again, off-again boyfriend Tal.
Both have to make the decision to fall back to comfortable old habits or make a giant leap of faith.
Having read the book first, I was incredibly stoked to see the movie. I knew there would be some changes, but I couldn’t anticipate just how many. The movie is a lot different from the book, but, surprisingly, not in a compromising way. Despite the changes, the filmmakers were still able to perfectly capture the essence of the story and the characters. The changes are things I could see happening in the book. Fans of the book have to remember that the movie is a separate entity, and that the filmmakers deserve creative freedom too. The writers of the book are happy with the movie and that’s enough reason for me to not mind the changes.
Cera (“Superbad,” “Juno”) and Dennings (“The House Bunny,” “Charlie Bartlett”) are the perfect Nick and Norah. Cera has perfected his lovable, awkward dork even more, and Dennings plays the girl who doesn’t realize how gorgeous she is very well. They both deliver their witty banter so naturally and their chemistry is obvious.
The movie’s soundtrack is amazing, as it should be, since the movie revolves around Nick and Norah’s love of music. The soundtrack includes songs from Devendra Banhart and Bishop Allen, both of whom make appearances in the movie. It also has songs from We Are Scientists, Takka Takka and The Submarines. Almost immediately after leaving the theater, I made my way to Best Buy to get the soundtrack, and it has claimed residence in my car CD player ever since.
“Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist” is a movie that is so comfortable and relatable that I couldn’t help but want to jump through the screen and be their new best friend.
It is sweet and hip (hip in a good way, not in a bad, self-important way) and, just like the book, I never wanted it to end. Just like I wanted to read the book again immediately after finishing it, I wanted to see the movie again before the credits even finished rolling.

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Cera and Dennings’ chemistry makes film a success