After Adam (Justin Long) gets a call from his ex-girlfriend Allison (Cobie Smulders) telling him she is getting married, Adam realizes he is just not ready to say goodbye. Against the advice of his best friend Mark (John Cho), Adam decides to drive back home to San Francisco to attend the wedding in hopes of convincing himself and everyone else, including her charming fiancé Aaron (Ryan Hansen), that he is truly happy for her. After a series of embarrassing, hilarious, and humbling situations, Adam discovers the comedy in romance, the tragedy of letting go and the hard truth about growing up.

What We Thought:

The Blacklist star Ryan Eggold wrote, directed, edited and I believe did some music for Literally, Right Before Aaron. This is his feature-length debut and if he keeps making movies like this, I’ll keep watching them. It’s funny, charming and at times brutally honest.

Justin Long plays Adam who gets a call from his ex (Cobie Smulders) letting him know she’s getting married and she’d like him to be there. His best friend (John Cho) doesn’t think it’s such a good idea and doesn’t understand why Adam is hanging out with the groom to be Aaron. Adam just wants to show everyone he is happy and all good despite being neither one of those things. Sure we’ve seen similar films and it does checkmark a lot of rom-com tropes, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy the film.

Long has mastered these types of roles. He knocks these “Down to Earth/Every Man” characters out of the park every time. He’s human. He’s funny. He’s easy to root for. In a flashback scene Smulders’s character says to Adam something like “I don’t know if you are charming or an asshole”. And that’s the perfect description. You root for Adam even though you know it’s never going to work out and what he’s doing is pretty wrong. But Long just smiles and you continue watching the upcoming trainwreck.

The rest of the cast is just as good. As a guy I totally understand why Adam would have difficulties giving up on Smulders. She’s pretty, funny and outgoing. One look at Ryan Hansen and you’ll understand Adam’s uneasiness around him. John Cho is always great even in a small side-kick role. Kristen Schaal is funny as Adam’s date to the wedding. Peter Gallagher is a personal favorite of The Nerds Templar and he has a small role, but steals scenes. Luis Guzman gives a “wise janitor in a 1980’s movie” performance. Look for cameos from Dana Delaney and Lea Thompson as well.

After watching Literally, Right Before Aaron I jokingly tweeted to Ryan Eggold asking who hurt him. The film feels so honest and authentic that I’d be shocked if it wasn’t somewhat from the heart. If you’ve ever had your heart ripped out and then watched them move on without you, you will 100% relate to the film. Long is perfect casting for a film like this as is the rest of the cast. If you’ve liked his previous rom-com type movies, you’ll like this a lot.


Cast & Crew:

  • Justin Long
  • Cobie Smulders
  • Ryan Hansen
  • John Cho
  • Kristen Schaal
  • Dana Delany
  • Peter Gallagher
  • Lea Thompson
  • Luis Guzmán
  • Directed, Written, and Edited by Ryan Eggold

Recommended If You Like:

  • A Case of You
  • Going the Distance
  • Justin Long Romance Flicks

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