Title: Two Night Stand
Director: Max Nichols
Starring: Miles Teller, Analeigh Tipton and Jessica Szohr
The ability to seek out the opinions of the people you trust the most during a seemingly harrowing new situation, particularly when it comes to dealing with your confusing emotions during that experience, often gives people peace of mind. But being forced to confront your complex feelings about that unfamiliar incident with someone you don’t know can be even more frightening. That perplexing dilemma of dealing with new people during an unusual event is smartly shown between the two main characters of the upcoming independent romantic comedy, ‘Two Night Stand.’ The movie, which marks the feature film directorial debut of Max Nichols, and is the first screenplay from Mark hammer, offers the genre a desperately needed different approach to how characters learn to cope with their feelings towards someone they just met.
‘Two Night Stand’ follows a 20-something New York City college graduate, Megan (Analeigh Tipton), who’s unsure what to do with her life after her fiancé ends their engagement. She doesn’t have any job prospects, as she only attended college to be with him. With her desire to be a loving housewife and mother now shattered, she considers trying internet dating as she ponders what she wants to do with the rest of her life.
After a chance encounter with her ex-fiancé, Chris (Josh Salatin) and his new girlfriend, Becca (Kellyn Lindsay), Megan’s roommate, Faiza (Jessica Szohr), encourages her to truly pursue dating again. She decides to invite herself to the apartment of a man she meets on a dating website, Alec (Miles Teller), with who she ends up having a one-night stand. After they have an awkward and unromantic morning after, she tries to make a discreet exit, only to find that the city has been hit with a record-breaking snowstorm.
Unable to leave Alec’s building, Megan is forced to indefinitely stay in his apartment. Forced to spend another day together, the two have their first true conversation about their lives. While they continuously banter with each other, their chemistry escalates as they realize they like each other more than they initially thought. But their potential relationship is suddenly halted when Megan discovers a shocking secret about Alec. He tries to prove to her that their bond is stronger than what she finds. But she can’t get past the fact that he lied to her, and begins once again question if she’s worthy of love.
Hammer, who also made his feature film executive producing debuts with ‘Two Night Stand,’ was rightfully chosen to be featured on the 2011 edition of Hollywood’s prestigious Black List (which reports the best unproduced screenplays each year). The scribe, who penned the movie’s screenplay after working on scripts for MTV’s comedy-drama series, ‘Skins,’ realistically showcased the realistic and extensive conversations people have as they start to fall in love with someone they recently met.
Having Megan be forced to stay with Alec in his apartment, and engage in an uninterrupted, emotionally candid conversation with him about their past relationships and views on love, helped infuse the movie with a smart relatability. Hammer’s plot intriguingly explores the pressures young adults face to instantly find a successful career and relationship that makes them happy. Their discussion about the stress of contending with those societal pressures as they tried to navigate their relationships allowed Megan and Alec to finally realize there is someone who understands them, despite their overtly distinct approaches to dealing with the people in their lives.
The genuine relatability of Hammer’s script allowed Tipton and Teller to form a natural chemistry together, as they slowly became comfortable revealing to each other that they’re trying to find their identity and place in meaningful relationships. Tipton gave an unexpectedly brazen, but equally noteworthy, performance as Megan, who boldly set her first one-night stand in motion. Having initiated the connection with Alec, the actress fearlessly showed that not all females in romantic comedies have to be sweet and innocent; Megan was enthrallingly portrayed as going after what she wants, no matter what other people would think about her.
Nichols also smartly hired Teller for the role of Alec, after he had chemistry readings with Tipton following her casting. The actor effortlessly infused his character with a natural charm and infectious sense of humor. Whether Alec’s teasing his new romantic love interest, including joining him as he breaks into his neighbor’s apartment to use their bathroom, or seriously asking about her upbringing and relationship with Chris, Teller has a natural range of showing both his character’s brash and sensitively vulnerable sides.
‘Two Night Stand’ is a powerfully unique romantic comedy that smartly focuses on how two young adults who have experienced pain in their past romantic relationships, which tainted their views on love, finally learned to rely on their own instincts. Rather than create lead characters who only listen to the advice their friends and family give them about their romantic relationship, Hammer created two strong-willed leads who enthrallingly learn to rely on each other to get through a harrowing situation. To showcase the truly confusing emotions people feel as they fall in love, Nichols smartly cast Tipton and Teller as the strong-will leads. The actors’ diverse range of emotions throughout the romantic comedy, from awkwardly trying to make idle conversation as they prepare to wait out the snowstorm, to trying to suppress their concern as their passion for each other grows throughout the day, helped revitalize the genre, and prove how falling in love should really be presented.
Written by: Karen Benardello