“I Used to Go Here”
Directed by: Kris Swanberg
Starring Gillian Jacobs and Jermaine Clement, “I Used to Go Here” is the independent dramedy that you probably have not even heard about.
This film is just like many other low-budget indie films: a simple narrative with complex characters. There is not too much there unless you want to look further into it. The film follows a successful writer, Kate (Gillian Jacobs), who visits her alma mater on a book tour and finds herself living vicariously through a group of college students and her old professor, David (Jermaine Clement).
I feel like the best way to describe this film is charming, yet somewhat boring. Since the plot is nothing too exciting and the cast is comprised of yet, not A-list actors, the film kind of lags because there is nothing to really build off of. The story is centered on creative writing, and as a creative writing minor, I found that I could relate to a few of the scenes or inside jokes between the characters. However, if you are not familiar with this subject or career field, I can understand why this film would be a snooze-fest because, to be honest, I found myself drifting away more than once.
This film was produced by comedic A-list actor Andy Samberg, and this fact drew me into watching it because as you can guess, I assumed it would be funny. I think the indie is more so witty at times rather than funny. I never really caught myself laughing or even smiling as I do during most comedies. It is almost as if I just sat through this film with a straight face despite actually enjoying it for the most part. This was not a film that I would pay to watch in theaters or on-demand again and honestly, I don’t even know if I would watch it again for free. It was not that it was a terrible film because it was not even that horrible, it just was not really anything special.
Gillian Jacobs does give an amazing, energetic performance. I think that if she was not in the movie that the movie would not ever find its tone. She delivers an eccentric, agreeable character that we never like or dislike throughout the film. I think that this may go against traditional screenwriting rules because if you ask me, a character always needs a flaw. But perhaps, I didn’t catch on to her flaws as much as the other characters in the film because I definitely was pulled into her character’s story the most.
“I Used to Go Here” is a quiet, subtle indie film, and you may miss it if you aren’t paying attention. I think it is a worthy watch if you enjoy this type of extremely simple narrative. If you are into non-stop action, comedy, etc., I would skip this one because it is certainly more of a chill vibe than your usual on-demand blockbuster. I give it a 6 out of 10.