Man Up (film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Ben Palmer|
|Written by||Tess Morris|
|Music by||Dickon Hinchliffe|
|Edited by||Paul Machliss|
|Distributed by||StudioCanal Saban Films|
|Box office||$3 million|
Man Up is a 2015 British-French romantic comedy film directed by Ben Palmer from a screenplay written by Tess Morris, starring Lake Bell and Simon Pegg. The film follows a single 34-year-old woman (Bell), who after being mistaken for a stranger's blind date, finds the perfect boyfriend in a 40-year-old divorcé (Pegg). The film was released on 29 May 2015 by StudioCanal.
Nancy is 34 years old and has been single for four years. She holds a pessimistic view on love, but her sister hopes that Nancy can find love and encourages her to "put herself out there." Nancy has an awkward blind date at her friend's engagement party.
Nancy takes the train to London to attend her parents' 40th anniversary celebration. On the train, Nancy sits across from Jessica, a bubbly 24-year-old woman who is going on a blind date based on a self-help book called 6 Billion People and You. Nancy is rude to Jessica, so when Nancy falls asleep, Jessica leaves behind her copy of the book, bookmarking Chapter 7, "Your Negative Thoughts are Ruining Your Life (And Everyone Else's...)". At London Waterloo station, Nancy pursues Jessica to return the book, but is stopped by Jack, Jessica's blind date, who thinks she is Jessica because of the book. Before Nancy can explain she is not Jessica, the nervous Jack charms her with his rambling introduction. She decides to take a chance and pretend that she is Jessica, and the pair have a very good time drinking and bowling, but Nancy's ruse is destroyed when they run into her creepy secondary school acquaintance, Sean.
Nancy and an angry Jack argue and return to the bar to retrieve his bag and his notebook, where they run into Hilary and Ed, Jack's soon-to-be-ex-wife with the man she left him for. Nancy goes along with Jack's own ruse when he pretends she is his girlfriend. The presence of the self-assured Nancy irritates Hilary, but Nancy ends up consoling Jack in the bathroom, where she shares the story of her own ex and helps him achieve closure.
Nancy wants to invite Jack to her parents' anniversary party — but Jessica has left telephone messages for Jack and still wants to meet up, so he parts ways with Nancy. Nancy arrives at her parents’ party, but is very sad and Jack, who has little in common with Jessica, also quickly realises that letting her go was a mistake. After Jessica- who is pleased about Jack and Nancy's "love story" because it supports her optimistic view of the world- sees him off in a taxi, he enlists the help of Sean and some teenagers (Sean sent Jack to the wrong house and went off to try his luck with Nancy himself - to little avail - but one of the teenagers knew where she lived and they all went there together) to find Nancy's house and they decide to take a chance on each other.
- Lake Bell as Nancy
- Simon Pegg as Jack
- Sharon Horgan as Elaine
- Rory Kinnear as Sean
- Ken Stott as Bert
- Harriet Walter as Fran
- Ophelia Lovibond as Jessica
- Olivia Williams as Hilary
- Stephen Campbell Moore as Ed
- Henry Lloyd-Hughes as Daniel
- Dean-Charles Chapman as Harry
- Robert Wilfort as Ryan
- John Bradley as Andy (room service)
- Phoebe Waller-Bridge as Katie (Engagement party)
In June 2013, it was announced Simon Pegg had joined the Big Talk production, co-starring as the romantic interest. On 19 November 2013 Lake Bell joined the cast as the film's lead, with The Inbetweeners director Ben Palmer set to direct. The film received funding from BBC Films, with Anton Capital Entertainment and Amazon Prime Instant Video joining as minor production partners. StudioCanal distributed the film.
Olivia Williams, Rory Kinnear, Stephen Campbell Moore, Sharon Horgan, Harriet Walter, and Ken Stott joined the cast of the film during the filming. Principal photography began on 20 January 2014 in London.
Man Up was released theatrically in the United Kingdom on 29 May 2015 by StudioCanal following its premiere at the 2015 Tribeca Film Festival on 19 April. The film was released in the United States by Saban Films on 13 November 2015.
The film received positive reviews from critics. On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an 80% "Certified Fresh" rating based on 79 reviews, with an average rating of 6.25/10. The site's consensus states: "Thanks to fine performances from Lake Bell and Simon Pegg, Man Up largely strikes the deceptively difficult balance between romance and comedy." On Metacritic, the film holds a 69 out of 100 rating, based on 16 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".
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- Kemp, Stuart (21 January 2014). "Olivia Williams, Rory Kinnear, Stephen Campbell Moore Join British Rom-Com Man Up". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 3 February 2014.
- Butler, Tom (20 March 2015). "Man Up: Simon Pegg and Lake Bell Star In Exclusive First Trailer". Yahoo!. Retrieved 21 March 2015.
- Wiseman, Andreas (20 January 2014). "Big Talk's Man Up underway". ScreenDaily.com. Retrieved 3 February 2014.
- "Man Up production has begun in London with Simon Pegg and Lake Bell". Film3Sixty Magazine. 21 January 2014. Archived from the original on 30 January 2014. Retrieved 3 February 2014.
- "Man Up (2015)". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved 14 May 2020.
- "Man Up". Metacritic. Retrieved 25 September 2015.