Every week, fortysomethings Kate (Andie MacDowell), Janine (Imelda Staunton) and Molly (Anna Chancellor) convene the Sad Fuckers Club to drink gin, eat chocolate and slag men. Then teacher Kate begins a passionate affair with an old pupil, Jed (Kenny Doughty). How will a frightfully conservative community react when the news seeps out? And will the Sad Fuckers Club ever be the same again?
Like Bridget Jones’s Diary, this is a slick, amusing chick flick that obsesses over relationships, even though its primary audience is women who have slipped, squirming and maybe even screaming, into middle age. That said, writer-director John McKay’s feature debut vitally pulls off the canny, Bridget-ish trick of being good enough, funny enough and universal enough to welcome all comers. So long as you’ve ever experienced the highs, lows and soul-crushing when-am-I-ever-gonna-get-laids? of love, you’ll find something to latch onto here.
McKay also deserves plaudits for getting the usually brittle MacDowell to turn in a performance that is both likeable and, astonishingly, sexy. If only he’d resisted the urge to swap zingy one-liners for EMOTIONAL DEPTH AND SOUL SEARCHING in the final third. To say more would reveal a major plot point, but suffice to say Crush features a jarring shift of tone that will leave you shaking your head for the last half hour. And it was all going so well.