Nothing angers me more than a title meant to connect me as a viewer with a group of people that represent 5% of the world. Based on true events, People Like Us is the story of people like no one. A frustrating tale that drags on far beyond the point it needs to, People Like Us is just another predictable story where all the characters decide to do the wrong thing.
In a single day, slick salesman Sam (Chris Pine) has his job thrown into jeopardy and learns his father has passed away. Uneasy about grieving or showing any real feelings toward his deceased father and widowed mother, Sam reluctantly heads home for the funeral. A famous, yet somewhat overlooked music producer, Sam’s father was the key that made many well known acts what they are today.
When the family’s longtime lawyer asks to meet in private, Sam suspects he is about to be re-payed for the years of neglect he lived through at the hands of his father. Sam is indeed handed a pile of money, just what he needs to save his job. Except, the money comes with a note, requesting it be delivered to someone else. In attempting to find out who the money is intended for, Sam and the rest of his family are confronted with a revelation that will either pull them together, or drive them further apart.
There’s nothing gripping about People Like Us. The story telling is convoluted and flat, and does more to push my buttons than create a well of empathetic emotions. Are these characters supposed to be people like me? Are people like them, all going through the same thing? This is supposedly based on the type of real story that comes on the 10 o’clock news with the title, “Once in a lifetime.” There are so few people in the world that can look at this movie and think, “wow, we are all so similar.”
Another thing that grinds my gears are characters who supposedly know everything about a specific topic, gargling all the apparent unknown players in their area of expertise. Sure, People Like Us gets points from me for actually mentioning Faith No More, but it loses all its credibility for not using or even referencing the Talking Heads song, ” People Like Us”!
In the long run, People Like Us is not a terrible movie. It’s the average run of the mill family issues film with a clever twist for those who aren’t paying attention. Sitting through the film does feel like an eternity, but once the lights are up and you’re out the doors, you’ll forget the whole thing happened.
Rating: 2 out of 5 ‘Staches