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“No Hard Feelings” Movie Review

Updated: Mar 6

Lauren Sellman, Arts & Entertainment Editor

“No Hard Feelings” Promotional Poster. Photo//BTG Lifestyle

“No Hard Feelings” starring Jennifer Laurence (Maddie) and Andrew Feldman (Percy) was released in June 2023. This rated-R comedy is ranked at 6.4/10 on IMDb.  

The story takes place in Montauk, New York where Maddie is a struggling bartender who accepts a unique job offer to try to get enough money to keep her house and avoid bankruptcy. 

The opening scene shows Maddie's car being towed as she is struggling to pay rising property taxes on her house and car, even while working two jobs. Without a car, she cannot work her second job as an Uber driver and will never make enough money to keep her house. 

Percy is an awkward 19-year-old whose parents posted a job offer looking for someone to “date” him to bring him out of his shell. Percy’s parents secretly hired Maddie to “date” him for the summer and help him loosen up before going off to college the following year. In exchange for this, she was promised a car, which would enable her to save her home. 

It is odd enough that his parents are hiring someone to pursue a romantic relationship with him, they also have access to his location at all times, his internet history, and his phone passcode. 

Although the notable age difference between the two main characters might be off-putting, it is a central plot point that drives a majority of the humor. By constantly addressing this age difference through jokes and banter between the two, the movie attempts to make light of their relationship. This has led to conflicting opinions and controversy regarding the concept of this movie. 

The first half of the film is comprised of more risqué scenes and raunchy jokes, as Maddie dramatically tries to seduce Percy from the first time they meet. However, after spending more time with him, she starts to see him as a friend and more than just a ticket to a free car. 

Although her motives were questionable from the beginning, by the second half, the tone shifts to a coming-of-age conclusion. Maddie lets go of the emotional baggage that was keeping her in Montauk and realizes it would be better for her to move on with her own life. After getting a car, she sells her house, adopts a dog, and plans on moving to California. Percy leaves for college at Princeton. 

Throughout the movie, Maddie tends to keep reminding Percy that he is an adult and needs to be able to make his own decisions and solve his own problems. By the end of the summer, Percy is advocating for himself and his privacy to his parents, who are just grateful he is coming out of his shell. It is explained that the film is a testament to the dangers of helicopter parenting and the importance of letting young adults live, make mistakes, and learn. 

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