‘Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist’ (2008) Review

After his girlfriend breaks up with him, Nick is approached by Norah who asks him to be her boyfriend for a few minutes to save face in front of a friend. That friend also happens to be Nick’s ex, unbeknownst to Norah.

When the two find out that their favorite band is putting on a secret show somewhere in the city, they team up to try and find out where while also juggling Norah’s drunk best friend Caroline, Nick’s bandmates, and meddlesome exes. Along the way, Nick and Norah bond and have to decide whether or not to move forward together, or stay stuck in the past with two people who are clearly no good for them.

I really liked Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist back in the day when it was released in theaters but admittedly, I haven’t watched it since. I am so pleased to say it holds up really well and I still thoroughly enjoyed it. Kat Dennings is an actress I have found I enjoyed in just about everything and while I never thought Michael Cera had much range as an actor, he seems tailor-made for the role of Nick. If anyone can play an awkward, love-sick teenager, it’s Cera.

He and Dennings were incredibly cute together. Both Nick and Norah are unsure and shy, caught up in bad relationships while they discover just how much they have in common over the course of one night and how good things could be if they let go of the people holding them back.

Ari Graynor, as well as Nick’s bandmates, played by Aaron Yoo and Rafi Gavron, really contribute to the humor in the movie, especially Graynor’s drunk girl, Caroline who is just trying to find Norah… or a way home. It’s a strong cast working with a strong script and I think that’s really what makes this movie work better than most teen-centric rom-coms.

The only downside to the film, in my opinion, is Alexis Dziena as Nick’s ex-girlfriend, Tris. Like most romantic comedy exes, she’s pretty one-dimensional, the pretty popular girl who messes with the lead’s head and only wants him back because someone else wants him. It’s a power thing, of course. But I really appreciate movies that give all of their characters a real personality, not just the two you’re supposed to be rooting for.

But that aside, Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist is absolutely worth a watch and probably deserves more love than it gets. It’s a fun flick with genuine laughs and gives us a believable teenage romance that never promises a Happy Ever After, but instead, a Happy for Now which is something I don’t think we get enough of. Bonus? It has a fantastic soundtrack.

Author: Romona Comet

"I'm probably watching a rom-com right now."