It’s a night out on the town for Jim and Alex, his best friend but also the wingman from hell incapable of anything other than an approach so direct it is akin to a charging rhinoceros, trying to set Jim up with a drunken weeping widow only moments after his girlfriend has broken up with him.
Never one to beat about the bush and refusing to listen to deflections he quickly deduces that Jim is uncomfortable with the imminent arrival of his thirtieth birthday, but why is this such a big deal? Because at twenty-nine years and somewhere around three hundred and sixty days Jim is still a virgin and is convinced the universe is determined to keep it that way.
What does a best friend do in such situations? He finds a pair of hot sisters hanging around the bar and arranges a double date – trouble is, Kitty and Lulu also have plans for how the evening will end and it might not be quite the happy ending Alex has planned for Jim or himself when he plans on painting the town red.
Feature debut of director Benjamin Barfoot, Double Date writer Danny Morgan is Jim, clumsy rather than a caricature as he is pulled along in the wake of Alex (Being Human’s Michael Socha), effortlessly cool while Jim can’t even cope with Cyrano de Bergerac-style prompted flirting, though Alex’s inability to text properly doesn’t help.
A cavalcade of the worst Friday nights known to man and definitely not to be taken seriously, Alex is reprehensible in his attitudes but fascinating to watch – at a remove – but under it all he is unafraid to show his feelings. His love for Jim is genuine and he is honest in everything he says and does whether appropriate or not, something which cannot be said of the conniving Kitty and Lulu (Kelly Wenham and Georgia Groome).
Lulu the more timid of the siblings, she allows herself to be led by the brash, assured and distinctly more glamorous Kitty on whom Alex has set his sights, but while every circumstance seems to conspire against the quartet Kitty is still determined to get them back to their country mansion and then into the basement.
The four leads likeable and playing well together, Double Date doesn’t labour the slapstick though it sometimes feels as though many favours were cashed in during the production and it does skirt around the neighbourhood somewhat before going full blown horror for the ludicrously satisfying finale.
Reminding of the awkwardness of Sightseers during an overlong birthday party musical number with Jim’s overbearing and deeply religious family, they are a pointed contrast to Alex’s father who is unable to discern between being touched by the holy spirit and his son tripping on ecstasy. The epitome of a Friday night pizza movie, Double Date may perhaps not the best or most original date but it’s certainly a fun one.
Double Date is on general release from Friday 13th October