In this sexy indie comedy from actress-turned-writer/director Katie Aselton, a young couple in a bit of a relationship slump make a pact that they're each allowed to have a one-night stand with another person, no questions asked. Naturally, this kind of thing always sounds easier and a lot more fun than it actually is, as they both soon discover. Ever-reliable comic actor Dax Shepard plays the male half of the equation.
Darren (Dax Shepard) and Annie (Katie Aselton), a young married couple for seven years are having The Itch. It has been months since they have had sexual intercourse and it’s troubling them, big time. That really is their main problem in the intimacy department; all other matters suffice – they have ‘snuggle boners’, enjoy doing crossword doing puzzles together, even racing to finish first before the other, and truly, love each other as husband and wife. But the non-fornication going on between them has become a void and they want to fill it. This is the indie film ‘The Freebie’ starred in and directed by Katie Aselton.
‘The Freebie’ has no blatant special effects or plot twists, but it does have sparks between co-stars Dax Shepard and its also writer-director Katie Aselton. You root for them at first frame; the traditional couple that they are who believes in true love, friendship, and fidelity. So it’s quite a stretch that as Darren and Annie, they would resort to a stupid solution: sleep with other people so they can get back to the excitement of couple-hood. In fact, the solution is quite simple: Darren and Annie should just sleep togehter. But no, this is an indie film and they do things differently in the indie world.
As a film, ‘The Freebie’ obviously looks like a low-budget film with earnest storytelling. Here we have a seemingly nice couple who happen to be nice to each other, but cannot accept the kind of intimacy that they have achieved. They’re young, they’re supposed to have wanton sex all day and all of the night. And yet, they’d rather cuddle, geek out together, and be lovey-dovey. Seriously, something must be wrong. Again, the decision Darren and Annie make to ‘save’ their relationship would be their undoing. However you consent to a ‘freebie’ a.k.a. allowing your spouse to do the nasty with other people, consequences are right around the corner. Swinging is a sport, it entails discipline and stamina, and most likely, a blind eye. In the end, ‘The Freebie’ tells us this: Love can be boringly great.
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Melissa Orcine - Cinema Paradiso
Classification is to be confirmed by the British Board of Film Classification