I Like Me is billed on its IMDB page as a comedy, its trailer on YouTube however refers to it as a dramedy. I wish I had seen that before I sat down to watch it. As it was, I frequently found myself wondering why so much was being played straight. It makes sense now, as this tale of sisters who are polar opposites leans more towards drama with the occasional funny bits. Not that that’s a bad thing by any means.
Maggie (Sue Schaffel) and Hannah (Anna Fagan) are sisters but they couldn’t be less like each other. Hannah has a stable but boring job, a husband Luke (Chris Kozlowski) and a house in the suburbs. Maggie has an ex-husband, and Michael (Jackson Trent, North Woods) the son she hasn’t spoken to in ages. And she is currently homeless.
Of course, she ends up crashing with Hannah, which leads to much friction between all concerned. One afternoon Maggie mixes large amounts of booze and Hannah’s collection of self-help books. The result is “I Like Me” written by Dr. Margaret Schultz. It becomes an internet sensation. And while she becomes an overnight celebrity, Hannah’s life begins to fall apart.
Director Joshua Land and co-writer Abby Sussman have come up with a likable if unspectacular film. I Like Me hits on some familiar situations. There have been plenty of films about self-proclaimed experts who are anything but. Watching Maggie lie her way through interviews and fake expertise in a field she has no clue about is amusing. As is the reaction of those around her to her act, and her success.
The other main aspect of I Like Me, the dissimilar siblings and family conflicts is a bit more problematical. Like many films of this kind, it sets it conflicts up by making the sisters so different that they have no common ground besides being sisters. The script also makes Maggie so unlikeable I couldn’t believe Hannah and Luke didn’t boot her ass out after the first night. And I felt no sympathy for her when she finds out Michael got married and didn’t even tell her, let alone invite her to the wedding.
That lack of empathy hurts the film and makes several of the last act’s events hard to believe. Or maybe I should say harder than usual for this kind of film. But given the popularity of this genre, there’s obviously a lot of people willing to suspend their disbelief. Those people should find I Like Me to their liking.
I Like Me held my attention even if it’s a bit out of my usual range, so it should keep plenty of other folks entertained as well. It’s currently available to stream via Gravitas Ventures. You can get updates on the film’s website and Facebook page.