Dirty 30 (2016) – Movie Review

I love watching YouTube. No, not the cat video side of things. But rather the comedians, artists and other content creators that the website has to offer. YouTube personalities have already been changing the game by getting into Hollywood and creating films. Known as “The Holy Trinity” of YouTube, three women have just released their second feature film online and with a small cinema release. I personally think they are the funniest women I’m subscribed to on YouTube (besides Natalie Tran ofc) and have been following their careers for years. I bought the film on iTunes because I want to support their work, but did I like the film?

Dirty 3o follows Kate (Mamrie Hart) who is about to turn 30 and finds a blast from her past that reminds her she’s not where she wants to be in life. Her two good friends Evie (Grace Helbig) and Charlie (Hannah Hart) decide to throw her a big birthday bash to get her out of her rut. Old friends reunite, new people come along and Kate lets loose for one night of fun.

This film has all three women as executive producers, M. Hart and Helbig created the story, and M. Hart and Molly Prather wrote the screenplay. So clearly these three had a very prominent part in the creation of the film. The good parts of the story for me was the pacing of the film and the amount of set-ups and pay-offs it has. It’s set over 4-5 days and it packs a lot of content into a 90 minute film, but it works in the way that its written. There are a lot of plot lines in this film as well as many characters, but somehow an equal amount of time is spent going through a lot of plot lines and resolving them. A particular section of the film that I enjoyed was Kate’s inanimate letter. It was the inciting incident for the film, rolled through the middle and by the end it definitely paid off. The dialogue is definitely more millennial/slangy than any other  recent party film, which is definitely related to the actors and writers who’s professions are on the internet. It was a bit overkill and made the overall tone of the film just a tad cringey. Another section I really didn’t get was when Evie had a massive freak out when Charlie punched the teenager. I didn’t understand the motivation behind it at all. The bad parts of the story though had more so to do with characters than the overall story.

Main characters first. Out of the three women, M. Hart hands down was the best actress in this film. Knowing her personality and style of humour from her YouTube videos, it was hard at first to try and think of her as ‘Kate’ but she played the role very realistically and had me really rooting for her character. Helbig and H. Hart’s characters were the same amount of charming but I still felt like they were actresses more so than characters. One of the big problems I had was the relationship of Evie and Todd (Andrew Ridings). I couldn’t understand how they had even had a successful enough relationship to get married. Their relationship felt very black and white to me and I wished they had explored it some more. The stoners and the homeless man didn’t need to be there. They added humour to the story, but it felt awkward and unnecessary. Richard aka “Raven” (Adam Lustick) was an added layer to the film. I didn’t hate his character but it felt a little childish to have a grown man go goth on weekends. Kate’s love interest Dan (Matt Dellapina) acted the heck out of his character also. Their chemistry was very lovely to watch.

Other secondary characters like Oliver (Mikey Murphy) and Kinsey (Katherine Hughes) were a pleasure to watch on screen as well. I want to also give massive props to the antagonist, Ashley (Anna Akana) who was definitely the outstanding character in this. Akana is herself, also a YouTuber and I knew her personality from her videos and social media. She killed this role. Her dialogue was delivered really well and I could understand her as a person. The character of Rufus (Drew Monson) didn’t have much screen time but his role was very endearing. It was a nice change to see him in a different character than that of Not Cool, which was one of my first reviews! Time flies when you’re doing nothing with your life but watching movies.

The cinematography of the tee-pee scene was epic. I wasn’t expecting it to look really pretty on such a great scale. Overall, the camera work was great, which went hand in hand with the editing. The party montage was edited really nicely along with the rest of the film. The colour grading of the film was a bit too saturated for my liking. And some of the music choices (with said party montage) was weird and hard to listen to. There was a moderate continuity issue I noticed in my first watching with Kate drinking most of her drink then it being almost full in the next shot. I usually don’t notice those things, I just wanted this to be a humble brag for myself that I caught a conti issue.

The trailer is down below and it sums up the film but doesn’t give much away which I luuurve. Overall, I had a fun time watching this and am proud of these women. This is their second feature film they have worked on together, the former being Camp Takota. I enjoyed that film too, so if you want to give that a watch, please do so.

Rating: When you give YouTubers a chance to produce good media with great stories, it’s always a wake-up call to mainstream media. I love that. 3.5/5

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