Rashida Jones has had rewarding supporting roles in movies and on TV’s Parks & Recreation, but she’s never had a chance to prove herself as a leading lady in film. Celeste and Jesse Forever is that chance, one that she made herself as the movie’s co-writer, and though it’s not a great comedy, it is a great vehicle for her.
She plays Celeste, a marketing firm founder who’s divorcing her artist husband (Andy Samberg). They still hang out every day and are on such good terms that their friends are offended by it. That changes when Jesse drops the bombshell that a woman with whom he had a months-ago one-night stand is now pregnant with his child and he’s going to marry her. Celeste insists she’s fine, but inwardly she’s outraged that this man-child who never seems to finish a piece of artwork has now moved to the next stage of his life without any trouble.
The role of an unraveling Type A person is perfectly suited to Jones, who knows how to play this for laughs and how to play the anguish underneath, as during an explosive scene outside a bar when Celeste unloads all her issues on Jesse. The movie is too uneven and silly, but it has moments of great truth and a terrific comic performance from the gorgeous and funny Jones.
If you miss the movie when it plays at the Modern this weekend, don’t fret. It also opens at theaters in Grapevine.
[box_info]Celeste and Jesse Forever plays Fri-Sun at Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, 3200 Darnell St, FW. Tickets are $6.50-8.50. Call 817-738-9215.[/box_info]