Adventureland

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Released 2009

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Movie Summary

Director:
Greg Mottola
Released:
2009
Rating:
R

Adventureland is a 2009 ensemble comedy starring Jesse Eisenberg ("The Social Network") and Kirsten Stewart ("Twilight") as employees at a third-rate amusement park. It's the summer of 1987 and though James Brennan (Jesse Eisenberg) is still a virgin, he plans on taking his degree in Renaissance Studies to a graduate program at Columbia University in Manhattan. Unfortunately for James, his father loses his job and his only option is a sad, summer job at a Pittsburgh amusement park owned by Bobby (Bill Hader) and his wife, Paulette (Kristen Wiig). But he finds the long days of stuffed panda bears and horse race games brightened by Em Lewin (Kirsten Stewart), who wants to earn enough money to move out her dad's house. Though Em has been seeing married maintenance worker Mike Connell (Ryan Reynolds), she shares a rapport with James that eventually blossoms into something more. Writer and director Greg Mottola ("Superbad") brings equal measure of comedy and young romance to this poignant coming of age story.

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Metacritic Score

  • 80

    The New York Times A.O. Scott

    Somehow the story of a young man's coming of age never gets old, at least when it is told with the kind of sweetness and intelligence Adventureland displays.

  • 80

    Los Angeles Times Kenneth Turan

    Greg Mottola has taken that most overdone of contemporary genres, the coming-of-age story, and made it engaging, bittersweet and even fun.

  • 70

    Variety Todd McCarthy

    A rather ordinary account of youthful summer misadventures that goes down easily thanks to a sparky cast, more than 40 pop tunes that anchor the action in the late '80s and charact...

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    Categories

    Comedy, Drama

    Themes

    Love & Romance, Romantic Comedy, surviving high school, issues with authority, young love