Opening 27 Aug 2015
Writing credits: Max Joseph, Meaghan Oppenheimer
Principal actors: Zac Efron, Emily Ratajkowski, Jonny Weston, Shiloh Fernandez, Alex Shaffer
Cole (Efron) hangs out with his friends Mason, Ollie, and Squirrel, all happily communicating in their limited vocabulary, which includes many f-words. They live in the California San Fernando Valley and meet for the “best sushi in the Valley.” During the day they work for a call center which investigates potential bankrupt customers, offers them practically nothing for their properties and resells for a profit. Evenings they try their talents as volunteer DJs in clubs and otherwise join the “94% of the people who are looking for a party.” Cole is determined to succeed with the ultimate song, which will definitely not be “synthetic, computer-generated garbage.” He attracts the attention of James who asks “do you spin here often – reggae, dubstep, house, hardcore?” James is a wealthy, once successful, DJ, whose fame is fading. Naturally James has a girlfriend, Sophie, who is a Sanford University dropout. Naturally Cole is smitten. Naturally, Cole makes it in the end, but not before losing one of his friends.
Zac Efron still manages to enchant with his innocent smile and brilliant blue eyes. The 18 songs on the soundtrack are fine; but you can buy it separately without going to the movie. LP records are still a valuable part of movie sets, in case you are wondering what to do with your own collection. The actual story is about young people finding their way through parties, beautiful people, and drugs, as well as learning responsibility and the right values, i.e., growing up. It’s about the bit of luck coming at the right time and place and, as the title says: friendship. However, the plot meanders, disjointedly, repeatedly, so that 96 minutes stretch out too long. Still, it could be worth an evening out, except that here in Germany We are Your Friends has the misfortune to open on the same day as Straight Outta Compton, which is the exact same story, except that Compton is a true story about famous black American rap musicians and their very successful music, as well as the police violence in the California town which formed them. The fictitious white guys in Friends appear wimpy and privileged by comparison; viewers will aim for Straight Outta Compton instead. (Becky Tan)