For the record, the studio - Fox Searchlight Pictures - has Anna Kendricks' latest film listed as a comedy/drama. Perhaps it is because a couple of her co-stars (Craig Robinson and Lisa Kudrow) are better know for their comedies.


Sadly, this film falls squarely yuck section of the early year nonstop crap-o-rama that is generally released about this time. Calling "Table 19" a comedy is like calling a funeral procession a thrill ride.


Once again the talented Kendricks has attached herself to a film that is far, far, far below her talent level. It's like watching a trout flopping around in a goldfish bowl; it's not going anywhere and will eventually die. Anna has shone in bothe "Pitch Perfect" films, "Drinking Buddies", "Up in the Air" (the movie that was her coming out party), "The Last Five Years" and "Into the Woods". Films that took advantage of her personality and talent. But then there are the rest which ranged from poorly written to down right stupid. While I can appreciate the need to earn a living, I wonder if she understands that critical analysis includes her body of work.

This time, Anna plays Eloise who was at one time the girlfriend of the Bride's brother Teddy (Wyatt Russell) and maid of honor. However, at a point after most of the wedding plans were made, she was dumped by Ted and relieved of her duties as maid of honor - maybe. It becomes foggier and foggier as the film progresses as to whether she was fired or quit. But in either case, she decides to attend the wedding anyway and winds up seated at the back corner table with other random, disconnected guest who happened to have fulfilled the gift registry.


The guest include Jo a former nanny (June Squibb), a horny 17 year old (Tony Revolori), a couple who own a diner, The Kepps (Lisa Kudrow and Craig Robinson), and an ex-con Walter (Stephan Merchant) who provides the only glimpse at humor.


During the reception, Eloise pines over her ex beau, meets a wedding crasher who comes on to her - then disappears, gets propositioned by the horny kid, get counseled by the nanny, watches the Kepps not get along because Ms Kepp has her own agenda and finds a dog hiding in the bathtub.


Lost in the story are any kind of coherent characters except for Walther the ex-con who is trying to fit in without anyone knowing he is an ex-con. (There is a bit of irony that he has a light role in "Logan" which is also releasing today.) Kudrow and Robinson are actually un-funny. This was not the kind of film Squibb comes across well in. And, who was the owner of the dog and where did he come from? In fact you will find yourself asking "Huh?" more than laughing. Here's the kicker, the story was written by Jay and Mark Duplass who inked "Cyrus" and "The Puffy Chair").


For most of the talent, this was a paycheck; a moment of employment happiness. But Kendricks should be shooting for much higher goals than that; she is not good enough to save horrible writing.


"Table 19" owes me some laughs. Seriously! Anna Kendrick pours out her talent in a film that is such a waste. Were it not for Stephen Merchant's on-going schtick, this would be a complete failure.   -- GEOFF BURTON