“Admission” Fails to be Better Than Average


Megan Peterson

ZD30_1SHT_billing block_1   Released on March 22, Hollywood’s newest film Admission is not a standout compared to other recently released romantic comedies. While Admission does not fall completely flat, it does fall short of most movies starring the usually hilarious Tina Fey.  This disappointment could be attributed to Fey’s character, Portia Nathan, who is so similar to roles Fey has played before. As a result, the movie seems extremely unoriginal.  Fey plays an admissions officer at Princeton University— a woman who is left to make difficult decisions regarding which students are accepted and which Princeton hopefuls are rejected.  When she is invited to an alternative school by John Pressman (Paul Rudd) to meet one of his students, the romance begins.  However, this meeting poses several problems, as some see Fey’s and Rudd’s onscreen relationship as a conflict of interest— especially if she accepts one of his students into Princeton.  Also, John believes that the “special student” Portia is coming to see may be the child she had put up for adoption years ago.  Additionally, there exists added drama throughout the film, as Portia competes with her office rival Corinne (Gloria Reuben) to become the new Dean of Admissions.

   Overall, the most unfortunate aspect of this dramatic comedy is that it is not very funny.  Granted, the movie was not originally created to be a comedy; it was originally a non-comic novel written by Jean Hanff Korelitz and  later adapted by non-comic writer Karen Croner. However, Paul Weitz— a well known and well respected comedy director— was given this confusing mix of a movie to turn into some odd combination of a drama and a comedy. Although Fey and Rudd do have some funny moments, these two actors— known for great comedic performances in past movies—  create a film that is certainly nothing to brag about.  The movie’s failure further shows that Fey’s big screen performances are still not up to par with her small screen appearances.  Just as in Date Night and Baby Mama, her performance in Admission was not comparable to how well she has done in her hit show “30 Rock”.

Unfortunately, a story line that had great potential was poorly executed due to the lack of comedic writers.  Despite good intentions, Admission lacked the ability to keep the viewer interested throughout the whole movie.  The movie was like a drama that someone tried to force some funny lines into in order to lighten the mood.  Hopefully, Fey will prove she belongs on the silver screen in addition to the small screen next time around.  Until then, Admission does not prove to be anything but average.