Celeste and Jesse Forever (a J!-ENT Blu-ray Disc Review)
February 4, 2013 by Dennis Amith
“Celeste and Jesse Forever” is an entertaining romantic comedy about love, marriage, divorce and regret. But it’s a different type of romantic comedy that is fresh and different from what one will usually see in a film. While most romantic comedies tend to focus on falling in love and finding that one true soulmate, “Celeste and Jesse Forever” is about a divorced couple who realized they were true soulmates but unfortunately, drifted apart and realized they actually had something special, a little too late. “Celeste and Jesse Forever” is recommended!
TITLE: Celeste and Jesse Forever
FILM RELEASE: 2012
DURATION: 92 Minutes
BLU-RAY DISC INFORMATION: 1080p High Definition, 2:40:1, English5.1 DTS-HD MA, Subtitles: English, English SDH, French
COMPANY: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
RATED: R (Language, Sexual Content and Drug Use)
Release Date: February 5, 2013
Directed by Lee Toland Krieger
Screenplay by Rashida Jones and Will McCormack
Produced by Jennifer Todd, Suzanne Tod, Lee Nelson
Executive Producer: Kevin Scott Frakes
Co-Producer David Buelow, David Grace
Associate Producer: Sheri Davani, Noah Stahl
Music by Zach Cowie, Sunny Levine
Cinematography by David Lanzenberg
Edited by Yana Gorskaya
Casting by Angela Demo, Barbara McCarthy
Production Design by Ian Phillips
Art Direction by Joseph Oxford
Costume Design by Julia Caston
Rashida Jones as Celeste
Andy Samberg as Jesse
Ari Graynor as Beth
Eric Christian Olsen as Tucker
Elijah Wood as Scott
Will McCormack as Skillz
Emma Roberts as Riley
Chris Messina as Paul
Rich Sommer as Max
Chris Pine as Mystery Buddy
Celeste (Rashida Jones) and Jesse (Andy Samberg) are high school sweethearts who married young and are now at a crossroads at the age of thirty. While Celeste is a success in business, Jesse is unemployed and adrift. Celeste thinks that if they divorce now they could still remain friends. Jesse passively accepts the decision even though he is still in love with her. As reality sets in, Celeste slowly and painfully realizes she has been cavalier about their relationship, but her timing with Jesse is less than fortuitous.
What happens when you marry your best friend, the only person that you have a lot in common with but then you separate with that person but yet remain very close, as if you were still a couple? But that relationship starts to drift away as each find a new person to be with?
This is the basis for “Celeste and Jesse Forever”, a comedy/drama written by two friends, actress Rashida Jones (“Parks and Recreation”, “The Office”, “I Love You, Man”, “The Social Network”) and actor Will McCormack (“Boiler Room”, “Elf”, “American Outlaws”) and directed by Lee Toland Krieger (“The Vicious Kind”, “December Ends”).
The film would star both Jones and McCormack but also star Andy Samberg (“That’s My Boy”, “Hot Rod”, “Saturday Night Live”), Elijah Wood (“The Lord of the Rings” films, “Green Street Hooligans”, “Eternal Sunshin of the Spotless Mind”), Ari Graynor (“Mystic River”, “Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist”), Eric Christian Olsen (“The Thing”, “The Hot Chick”, “Not Another Teen Movie”) and Emma Roberts (“Hotel for Dogs”, “Nancy Drew”, “Wild Child”).
The film would receive rave reviews from critics and also earning a nomination for Rashida Jones and Will McCormack for “Best First Screenplay” at the 2013 Independent Spirit Award.
And now the Blu-ray and DVD for “Celeste and Jesse Forever” will be released on Blu-ray and DVD in February 2013 courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics.
“Celeste and Jesse Forever” is a film that revolves around two best friends, who have a lot in common with each other. Celeste (portrayed by Rashida Jones) is a co-owner of a trendwatching company and Jesse (portrayed by Andy Samberg), an unemployed artist, were high school sweethearts and we see how much these two are very much alike and are in-sync with each other.
That is until they have dinner with their good friends Beth (portrayed by Ari Graynor) and her boyfriend Tucker (portrayed by Eric Christian Olsen) and find out that both Celeste and Jesse have been separated for over six months and are in the process of a divorce.
Both Beth and Tucker find it hard to see their friends still close to each other despite getting a divorce and it’s too weird for them.
As Celeste and Jesse think about why their friends are weirded out, we learn that they still live near each other. Celeste still lives in the main house, while Jesse stays at the room that was once his art studio.
While Jesse still tries to make ends meet by doing odd jobs for Celeste’s company, Celeste is very driven by her success. But when she brings up what happened with her dinner with her friends to her co-partner at the company, Scott (portrayed by Elijah Wood), Scott also recommends that maybe its time for her to start dating other guys.
Even Jesse’s friend Skillz (portrayed by Will McCormack) recommends he start dating again and even goes as far to set him up with the yogurt shop cashier. Jess tells Celeste that he will be dating again but Celeste doesn’t act like she’s bothered by it, but when she hears the two having fun, she starts to get a bit bothered by it.
One night, she makes a call to Jesse and that she needs help putting together her Ikea dresser. And when Jesse gets there, she is drunk and while the two are unable to put the dresser together, Jesse is able to build something artistic with the parts and next thing you know, the two start flirting with each other and they spend the night with each other.
The following morning, Celeste wakes up and while Jesse is clinging to her and kissing her, she tells him it was a mistake and the night only happened because she was drunk. This hurts Jesse’s feelings and he leaves.
For the next two weeks, as Celeste is traveling around the country on business, she tries getting a hold of Jesse but to no avail. The two eventually run into each other at the bookstore with their friends but Jesse also runs into Veronica (portrayed by Rebecca Dayan), a woman that he once dated three months earlier. And he introduces Veronica to Celeste and their friends.
When both Jesse and Celeste finally get a chance to meet up and talk, as Celeste wanted to talk about their fight, Jesse actually wants to talk about something important. He tells her that he is going to be a father and that Veronica is pregnant. So, he wants to make things work for the sake of their child.
Celeste doesn’t take the news that well but pretends that she supports his decision. But Celeste is starting to realize that Jesse, her best friend and the one person that she has in common with, will probably no longer be in her life.
When she goes to talk to her friend Beth, Beth realizes that Celeste is probably having second thoughts about divorcing Jesse, which Celeste tries to deny.
She tries to go on dates with other men, but she starts to realize from her friends and the way she has handled herself professionally and realistically, that she has placed her status and herself as a priority and while she expected Jesse to be there for her always, the fact is that she never put so much into their marriage and their own happiness.
And she is starting to realize that she met her soulmate, but because he has another woman and is expecting a child, will she move on with her life or try to get Jesse back?
“Celeste and Jesse Forever” is presented in 1080p High Definition (2:40:1 aspect ratio). Picture quality is fantastic for this film. Closeups of characters, closeup of clothing, you can see the textures and the detail quite well. The picture quality presents a natural quality to the overall film, black levels are nice and deep and for the most part, the film looks great on Blu-ray!
AUDIO & SUBTITLES:
“Celeste and Jesse Forever” benefits from the film’s English 5.1 DTS-HD MA lossless soundtrack in terms of music. Quite often the characters are at a club or at a party and music is presented. There are some ambiance during areas with crowds but for the most part, as one can expect from a romantic comedy, dialogue is crystal clear and in this case, an active soundtrack during the more music-driven scenes.
Subtitles are in English, English SDH and French.
“Celeste and Jesse Forever” come with the following special features:
- Audio Commentary 1 – Featuring a fun and crazy audio commentary between Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg.
- Audio Commentary 2 – Featuring a commentary on the creative process of the film courtesy of co-writers and talent Rashida Jones, Will McCormack with director Lee Toland Krieger.
- The Making of Celeste & Jesse Forever – (13:51) The cast and crew are interviewed about their characters. Director Lee Toland Krieger discusses the film, while Rashida Jones and Will McCormack discuss the screenwriting process of the film.
- On the Red Carpet: Premiere and Q&A – (14:08) Featuring the Q&A with director Lee Toland Krieger, co-writers Rashida Jones and Will McCormack and the main talent of “Celeste and Jesse Forever” at the LA Film Fes.
- Chris Pine Outtakes – (1:13) Chris Pine has a cameo as bearded druggie in the film and these are the outtakes.
- Deleted Scenes – (2:57) Featuring three deleted scenes “I Guess I’m Getting It”, “Can I Show You Something?” and “Do Any of You Have Any Jobs?”.
- Trailer – (2:13) The theatrical trailer for “Celeste and Jesse Forever”.
Once in a while, you watch a romantic comedy that distinguishes itself from rom-com’s. In the case of “Celeste and Jesse Forever”, co-writers Rashida Jones and Will McCormack take on the storyline of relationships that were meant to be, find your soul mate but yet due to circumstances, a (wrong) decision was made and now there is regret.
“Celeste and Jesse Forever” will be sure to tug on those who have experienced heartbreak and regret. I don’t know how many times I have heard many couples breaking up or divorcing because of status or financial status. you often hear about how some find it difficult to be in a relationship when the woman is the breadwinner and the man, is not.
In the case of this film, Celeste is the owner of a company, a driven woman who is great at what she does. But the problem is that Jesse wanted a family, he wanted more from the relationship but unfortunately he was unemployed.
And while these two are best friends, they have the same mannerisms, they enjoy the same entertainment and jokes and literally are in sync with each other, for Celeste, she was so used to having Jesse around her, no matter what. He lived behind her, if she calls him, he’s always there.
But because they are separated and are divorcing, he has now tried the dating circuit and met someone and also has gotten her pregnant.
And for this business woman who had lived her life quite well, is starting to realize while she gave so much to her business and professional status, she really never gave so much to her relationship and that one person that she did love and was her best friend, she is now losing her soulmate.
Actually for both Celeste and Jesse, they know that they are each other’s soulmate but because of their divorce and now that he wants to raise a family with his new girlfriend, despite being in love with each other, they know it’s too late to go back.
While I enjoyed the film, especially when it focused on Celeste and Jesse, there were some times through the film that other side characters didn’t make so much sense and I was actually turned off by it.
Jesse’s good friend Skillz is a druggie that somehow becomes Celeste’s good friend during her time of need. Getting her high and seeing her go from this strong individual to this mess that starts getting drunk smoking weed or drinking alcohol, I just didn’t think she had to fall that far down, nor did the writers have to go there just to get a point out of how miserable she is.
While the scenes of Celeste and Jesse doing stroking jokes with lip balm or food, to show how both have an awkward style of humor, although I didn’t care much for it, I actually was expecting it, considering comedian Andy Samberg was in the film.
As for the Blu-ray release, picture quality is fantastic and because the number of club tracks or party tracks featured in the film, music is also brings a lot of bass to the lossless soundtrack of “Celeste and Jesse Forever”. As for special features, you get a good number of special features especially two different kind of audio commentaries which was cool. And also a Q&A that was held at the LA Film Fes which was a great addition to this Blu-ray release and other special features included as well.
Overall, “Celeste and Jesse Forever” is an entertaining romantic comedy about love, marriage, divorce and regret. But it’s a different type of romantic comedy that is fresh and different from what one will usually see in a film. While most romantic comedies tend to focus on falling in love and finding that one true soulmate, “Celeste and Jesse Forever” is about a divorced couple who realized they were true soulmates but unfortunately, drifted apart and realized that they actually had something quite special, a little too late.
“Celeste and Jesse Forever” is recommended!
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