Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Tuesday, August 03, 2021
From left: Joe Swanberg and Jake Johnson introduce their newest film collaboration, "Win It All."

From left: Joe Swanberg and Jake Johnson introduce their newest film collaboration, "Win It All."

SXSW 2017: ‘Win It All’ wins over audience

Netflix’s “Win It All," a small-scale film that premiered at SXSW on Saturday, has a simple premise yet a surprisingly large amount of charm. “New Girl's” Jake Johnson plays Ed, a lazy, unmotivated, unfiltered and impulsive man, always indulging his vices. His friend, played by Keegan-Michael Key of “Key and Peele,” repeatedly calls him a loser and he is just that in almost every way. A shady friend asks Ed to look after a duffle bag while he is in prison, warning him not to look inside. Naturally, curiosity wins and he finds, among other items, a large amount of cash. His gambling addiction gets the better of him and he eventually gambles away the money, desperate for a way to earn it back. The film has unexpected twists and turns that maintain engagement from start to finish, rooting for this mess of a man who won’t root for himself.

This is Jake Johnson’s third collaboration with director Joe Swanberg, known for “Drinking Buddies” and the Netflix series, “Easy.” Swanberg has a distinct handcrafted, grassroot style that distinguishes his films from other big budget Hollywood projects. Despite using big film industry actors, his films maintain a sense of humility through low-budget and small crew production with a focus on everyday people, like a new wave Woody Allen. This casual nature to Swanberg’s film style creates intimacy through documentary-style camera movement, jump cuts and close-ups, building a sense of familiarity to these characters. Jake Johnson’s effortless comedic pacing and improvisation pair well with Swanberg’s material. During the Q and A, Johnson and Swanberg mention that this film is their most structured and scripted of their three collaborations. I had mixed thoughts about Swanberg’s “Easy” and was not sure what to expect with this film. Admittedly, the trailer did not quite excite me and I was fully prepared not to enjoy it; however I was pleasantly surprised. The film has a strong heart hidden within the dark comedy that becomes apparent especially at the end. Nothing is better than the close of a film that feels right and leaves a lasting impression to savor.

Support your local paper
Donate Today
The Daily Cardinal has been covering the University and Madison community since 1892. Please consider giving today.
Comments

Popular



Print

Read our print edition on Issuu Read on Issuu


Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2021 The Daily Cardinal