“The Country Club” is a comedic film that marks the debut of sisters as writers, actresses, and directors for this indie production.
Set within the snooty confines of an upscale country club, the movie is a farcical coming-of-age comedy about teen golfers competing in a country club’s junior tournament.
The Cartwright Sisters are in dire need of money for college and their clothing line business. They are willing to take any opportunity that they get. So they take up a job at an exclusive golf club. Elsa, one of the sisters mistakenly receives an invitation to play in a junior tournament at a prestigious east coast country club intended for a socialite with the same name as her. She and her sister hatch a plan to win the tournament and the prize money. But that doesn’t seem as easy as they think as they encounter several obstacles in the form of other persons at the club who also have an interest in the tournament.
While it showcases the potential of the Robert sisters as emerging talents in the filmmaking industry, the film falls short in certain areas, resulting in a mixed viewing experience.
One of the strengths of “The Country Club” lies in its ability to capture the atmosphere and essence of an elitist locale. All your thoughts or knowledge on what a ‘Country Club’ is are met. The grand estates, high hedges, and impenetrable cliques are all portrayed with an attention to detail, evoking the sense of exclusivity that characterizes such establishments.
The writing showcases moments of genuine humour, with laugh-out-loud jokes interspersed throughout the film. The Robert sisters demonstrate their talent as comedic writers, creating scenarios that elicit both genuine amusements and groans from the audience. But how far does that go to make this film what it is?
Additionally, another thing that works well for this film is the commendable casting choices. John Higgins for instance plays Roger Kowalski. His portrayal brings energy and a touch of absurdity to the film. The supporting cast, including James Urbaniak, Elaine Hendrix, and David Levi, deliver solid performances, adding depth and variety to the ensemble.
The movie benefits from the Robert sisters’ directorial skills, as they showcase a promising visual storytelling style. Their knack for capturing the opulent surroundings and utilizing the setting to enhance the comedic elements is evident. Furthermore, the diverse musical score compiled by Amit May Cohen adds an enjoyable layer to the film, with standout tracks that complement the unpredictable and lighthearted nature of the story.
Despite these strengths, “The Country Club” does have its weaknesses. The film relies heavily on juvenile humour, including pooping jokes, adolescent make-out scenes, and confused sexual identities. While these elements may be expected within the context of the comedy genre, they at times feel forced and fail to contribute meaningfully to the overall narrative. The reliance on such lowbrow humour detracts from the potential depth that could have been explored in the characters and their interactions.
Another drawback of the film is the underdevelopment of the protagonists, Tina and Elsa, played by Fiona and her sister Sophie Robert themselves. The sisters, while showcasing their talents as writers and actresses, give their characters little to do, relegating them to the background as other supporting characters take the spotlight when they are supposed to be the centre of it all.
The lack of consistent character arcs and meaningful obstacles for the main protagonists diminishes the audience’s investment in their journey.
It also felt like certain subplots and character dynamics felt disjointed and lacked coherence. The film introduces various supporting characters who, while adding comedic moments, fail to have consistent throughlines or significance to the core of the story. This inconsistency undermines the overall cohesiveness of the narrative and weakens the impact of the comedic situations.
Production wise ‘The Country Club’ looks and feels like a well-put-together film. There is the obvious opulence and class that a country club and its somewhat rich and uptight members should have. And this helps in advancing the story being told.
In conclusion, “The Country Club” demonstrates the emerging talents of the Robert sisters in the realms of writing, acting, and directing. The film successfully captures the atmosphere of an elitist country club and delivers moments of genuine humour.
However, it is marred by its reliance on juvenile humour and the underdevelopment of its main protagonists. Despite these flaws, the movie serves as a promising debut for the Robert sisters, showcasing their potential in the world of filmmaking. With further refinement and a stronger focus on character development, the sisters have the potential to create truly compelling and hilarious comedies in the future.
I would rate ‘The Country Club‘ 6/10.