A Simple Favour

Film, Thrillers
3 out of 5 stars
3 out of 5 stars
(5user reviews)
A Simple Favour

Anna Kendrick and Blake Lively spark up a blackly comic thriller about double-crossing frenemies, made by an unlikely director.

Sharper than your everyday mean girl since the beginning of her career, Blake Lively has always been capable of more than her opportunities have allowed her, while Anna Kendrick, a chipper ‘perfect’ thing in movie after movie, has been overrated. So it’s gratifying to see them both earning their keep in director Paul Feig’s borderline-nutso crime comedy, one that won’t be confused for a new ‘Gone Girl’. But even second-rate trashy turnarounds are worth savoring.

‘A Simple Favour’ opens in Kendrick’s kitchen: Her Stephanie Smothers (thank you, originating novelist Darcey Bell), a single suburban mom who regularly vlogs to a small audience of likeminded neurotics, has everything under control, yet she’s rattled by the disappearance of her friend, Emily (Lively). In flashbacks, we see that Emily, an acquaintance made while picking up their children at school, is an entirely different species: a Martini-drinking, power-suit-wearing toughie who’s married to Sean (‘Crazy Rich Asians’ Henry Golding), an unfairly handsome and successful writer.

You wait for the two women to connect across the chasm of Emily’s sleekly designed living room; their attraction – nuanced, brainy and one you wish would go to the obvious place – is what makes the film such an identifiable product of the director of ‘Bridesmaids’ and the all-female ‘Ghostbusters’. Stephanie becomes an amateur sleuth bent on hunting down her gal pal’s whereabouts or, barring that, sliding into her walk-in closet and marital bed. Once ‘A Simple Favour’ hits the first of several I-can’t-believe-they-went-there moments (there are a few too many), it loses some of its lure, and Feig never quite regains tonal control. But you won’t be bored by this.

By: Joshua Rothkopf


Release details

Release date:
Friday September 21 2018
117 mins

Cast and crew

Paul Feig
Jessica Sharzer
Anna Kendrick
Blake Lively
Henry Golding

Average User Rating

2.8 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:0
  • 4 star:1
  • 3 star:2
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:1
2 people listening
1 of 1 found helpful

A smart mystery, a "whatever happened to ...." film. It's funny, full of surprises, and provides an enjoyable night out. Anna Kendrick gives her best performance to date."  


Ummm... saw too too much in the trailer. You were just waiting for Blake Lively's character to disappear. Then and only then did the film kick into top gear... but for me; one thing that really confused and annoyed me was the rapidity that Kendrik's character fell for the husband... just too too risky and too obvious. It was annoying. Maybe they could have slowed that down a bit; they didn't really have time to get to know each other before she vanishes. It's all too quick I fear but now I am saying too much. It just lacked in depth and maybe overdid the new fangled tech style stuff! Vlogs etc... too cool for school maybe; or it could be that I am just too old for school!


I want to give this a 3.5 because it's certainly worth more than a 3. A young mum (Anna Kendrick), who is also a vlogger, becomes friendly with a very attractive, high-flying city boss (Blake Lively). Kendrick ends up looking after Lively's son, when Lively disappears. Why did she disappear? Is she dead, or not, as Lively's son claims he saw her after she died (and was found in a lake with her tattoo on her wrist). 

Could've been 15 mins shorter, but overall an entertaining watch. 


Single vlogger mum (Anna Kendrick) meets glamorous, sexy mum (Blake Lively) in the school playground and a friendship is struck. While vlogger is looking after sexy's son, sexy mysteriously disappears. Kendrick's timing is quite good. Lively is easy on the eye but as a film we are talking a good average. It is slightly too long as the story line expands and contracts but it's certainly not the worst film I've seen by a long way.

0 of 1 found helpful

A film that borders on the ridiculous..It is meant to be a comedy thriller,but the comedy is just that lame Hollywood style eg two women with barbie doll accents talking at 100 miles an hour with unintelligible witticisms.Kendrick is an appalling actress, she is all slap stick farce which is just not funny.Blake Lively is better but the script provides for her to talk in OTT cliches.The English actor is flat..As the story unfolds it gets more and more extreme and silly..Scenes become so wild and caricatured it was hard to sit through to the end.Hollywood really does need to stop making this type of film as it is so outdated and naff..Start by getting a good script before actually making the film...Dreadful