Rent Licorice Pizza (2021)

3.3 of 5 from 544 ratings
2h 8min
Rent Licorice Pizza Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
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Synopsis:
Licorice Pizza is the timeless story of Alana Kane and Gary Valentine growing up, running around and falling in love in the San Fernando Valley, 1973.
Actors:
Alana Haim, Cooper Hoffman, , Will Angarola, Griff Giacchino, , Dexter Demme, River Cornwell, Harrison Bray, , Karissa Reynafarje, Savannah Ioakimedes, Dorie Samovitz, Anna Cordell, Adam Somner, Joshua Carl Allen, Patrick Hoelck, , Lucia Angarola, Lola Brown
Directors:
Producers:
Paul Thomas Anderson, Sara Murphy, Adam Somner
Writers:
Paul Thomas Anderson
Others:
Andy Jurgensen
Studio:
Universal Pictures
Genres:
Comedy, Drama
Collections:
10 Films to Watch if You Like: Licorice Pizza, Films to Watch If You Like...
Awards:

2022 BAFTA Best Original Screen Play

BBFC:
Release Date:
06/06/2022
Run Time:
128 minutes
Languages:
English Dolby Digital 5.1, French Dolby Digital 5.1, German Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles:
Castillian, Czech, Dutch, English Hard of Hearing, French, German
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.39:1
Colour:
Colour
Bonus:
  • Camera Tests
  • Fat Bernie's Commercial
  • Behind the Scenes
  • The Handman Scene
BBFC:
Release Date:
06/06/2022
Run Time:
133 minutes
Languages:
English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, French DTS 5.1, German DTS 5.1
Subtitles:
Castillian, Czech, Dutch, English Hard of Hearing, French, German
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.39:1
Colour:
Colour
BLU-RAY Regions:
B
Bonus:
  • Camera Tests
  • Fat Bernie's Commercial
  • Behind The Scenes
  • The Handman Scene

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Reviews (11) of Licorice Pizza

Brain-sapping tedium - Licorice Pizza review by Alphaville

Spoiler Alert
16/06/2022

The trailer guys had a brilliant idea. Given that there’s nothing in the film itself to grab the viewer, let’s fast-edit clips to a soundtrack of Bowie’s ‘Life on Mars’ to at least make it sound interesting. Now imagine that trailer drawn out to 128mins without a Bowie score and you have just another long tedious coming-of-age teenage romance set in the 1970s.

The choice of soundtrack songs is dreadful. Well done if you can even get past the cheesy opening meeting set to a vomit-inducing ditty. It’s the kind of film that might eventually find a slot as slow afternoon fare on some obscure TV channel. A ‘timeless story’ trumpets the DVD blurb. Ironically… if for some unfathomable reason you decide to stick with it… you’ll be checking the clock to see how much longer you have to endure it.

13 out of 17 members found this review helpful.

Plenty to like but increasingly wearing - Licorice Pizza review by PD

Spoiler Alert
04/07/2022

There's plenty to like in this bewildering, highly original film, but the basic problem for me is the distinct lack of chemistry between Gary Valentine (Cooper Hoffman, son of the late, great Philip Seymour Hoffman) and Alana Kane (Alana Haim), which for me means that the sections where they're at each others' throats are a lot more convincing than any romantic connection. They're very good on their own terms - Hoffman's Gary is a successful child actor, who has wielded his limited “fame” with confidence far beyond his years, and he’s got a lot of alpha energy from having to navigate the egos of aging Hollywood stars and a revolving door of casting agents. It’s in this space that he declares to his younger brother, on the same day as meeting her, that he’s going to marry Alana someday - it's not a little creepy, but I guess that's the point. Alana meanwhile is the youngest daughter of a restrictive ex-Israeli soldier; there’s a seething anger just below the surface of all her interactions, impatient with her lot in life and the straight paths she’s uninterested in taking to achieve her goals of wealth and attention. Gary is the road not taken, the one that she knows she shouldn’t pursue but one she flagrantly does, putting her toe in, and then taking it out, for the entire length of the film.

As the two aggressively flirt and make one another jealous, Gary envelops Alana into his scattershot existence, first as his adult chaperone on his press tour trip to New York City, and then in a series of opportunistic business ventures in the Valley. Be it ahead of the trend — waterbeds, acting gigs, pinball houses, you name it — when Gary puts his eye on it, he’s immediately successful at it. Their seemingly random ventures (which apparently are all based on the real exploits of former child actor Gary Goetzman) carry Gary, Alana, and a small posse of young enablers across a summer in the Valley running breathlessly from one scheme to the next. In all the crisscrossing, Anderson does capture the time, 1973, remarkably well (I was there too, so I know), with faces shot au natural and close up so every imperfection is captured, bringing an delightfully incongruous sense of realism to all the surrealism on show. From Sean Penn and Tom Waits’ aging Hollywood alpha males setting up impromptu motorcycle jumps on a golf course to a bizarre evening with Bradley Cooper’s over-sexed Jon Peter’s buying a waterbed, you never quite know what's going to happen next.

But for me it all gets to be too much about halfway (it's long, and it felt like it). Gary and Alana's teasing and baiting, hurting then almost ferally defending one another goes from intriguing and hilarious to predictable and wearing - for while Alana does occasionally vocally question the weirdness of her spending so much time with a boy like Gary, the film isn’t interested in seeing either of them develop - in fact, Anderson seems most interested in just watching them repel and attract each other ad nauseum as they navigate their way amongst a never-ending line-up of truly awful people. You can see what Anderson is trying to do - get us to root for a messed-up dynamic because it’s so skilfully framed like a Hollywood ending, but for me I was ultimately rather glad to be released.

4 out of 4 members found this review helpful.

Offbeat romance - Licorice Pizza review by LC

Spoiler Alert
21/07/2022

This offbeat romance has little in the way of a contentional plot, feeling more like a free-wheeling series of incidents and encounters. Coupled with its relatively long running time, this may not exactly be gripping viewing, but the way it pleasantly ambles along has a lot of charm, and there are a host of bizarre and humourous characters to encounter along the way. The pimple-spotted and gawky leads are a long-way from the conventional idea of Hollywood glamour, as is their frequently akward and jarring romance. This, coupled with the film's refusal to settle into any obvious and standard style of narrative, ultimately won me over as a refreshingly different take.

1 out of 3 members found this review helpful.

Critic review

Licorice Pizza review by Mark McPherson - Cinema Paradiso

Paul Thomas Anderson really wants to just plop us into the 1970s with Licorice Pizza. It’s a romantic comedy of sorts where we follow two people that make an unlikely couple amid the many events of the early-to-mid 1970s scene. And that’s a scene that is allowed to envelop the picture with a hang-out nature that meanders around for all the charm, drama, heartbreak, and satire the era can provoke.

The romance is between the teenage actor Gary Valentine (Cooper Hoffman) and the twenty-something amateur photographer Alana Kane (Alana Haim). Gary makes the first move and it seems like it won’t happen. Alana, however, finds herself intrigued as her life doesn’t seem to be going in any particular profound route. The same goes for Gary who finds that his career in acting may have piqued before he’s even old enough to drink his troubles away. The two decide to take a shot at each other and find their way into each other’s lives through various business ventures.

Gary, seeking a new means of money, invests in a business selling waterbeds. It’s a risky but exciting venture that Alana decides to follow him with this pursuit. There are hills and valleys with their work relationship that is on the verge of becoming romantic. They make a big splash in sales that they can afford a shop but Gary’s fickle nature in women makes their relationship strain. An oil crisis limits their products and the two find themselves struggling for customers and cash, resulting in a daring downhill driving sequence when their truck runs out of gas. All the while the two struggle to admit their feelings in a love/hate relationship that will ultimately swerve towards love when push comes to shove.

Hoffman and Haim work quite well in these roles. They not only have the look and cadence of the youth of 70s-era Beverly Hills but have a genuine dynamic that makes their romance work. The back and forth between them as they bicker about business and personal goals rings true enough for a couple who is building a foundation for their relationship, where the toughest of waves won’t break their….I’m not going to say friendship for the pun. Screw it, I already did.

Also present in the picture is a cavalcade of an all-star ensemble in smaller roles. Sean Penn occupies a William Holden style actor role, playing an over-the-hill actor still replaying his glory days so he can impress women half his age. Present during most of those scenes is Tom Waits as an eccentric director playing off of Mark Robson as an eccentric guy who can work for a crowd and make people still interested when Penn’s character enters a room. You’ve also got John Michael Higgins as a very questionable character for being a business owner of Japanese restaurants who speaks to all his Japanese workers/wives in racial stereotypes. Keep an eye out for John C. Reilly in a blink and you’ll miss it cameo, playing an old TV star.

And we certainly can’t forget Bradley Cooper who steals the spotlight almost completely as the short-fused and incredibly vicious Jon Peters. He plays the celebrity as such a desperate figure trying to hold onto relevancy that he goes mad with power. One of the best moments features him stomping right up to a crowded gas station and forcing his way to the pump in a threatening manner. His presence is so electrifying that it seems almost criminal that his highlight shot of smashing car windows was reduced to a shot in the credits.

Licorice Pizza is not going to be everybody’s slice of nostalgia. If you’re not big on films like Dazed & Confused and Everybody Wants Some, you’re really not going to dig this picture. But if you like those types of meandering nostalgia with unpredictable routes of comedy and drama, boiling to a crescendo of an unorthodox romance, this picture hits enough of the right notes that it becomes more than just PTA’s attempt to replicate Richard Linklater.

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