One of the many gifts that comes along with a Netflix account is access to a plethora of independent films. Indies rarely get wide releases, and they’re not likely to be rented as consumers would rather spend money on a film they’ve heard of than one they haven’t. But with Netflix, they’re just a click away.

One of the better independent films available on Netflix is Greg Mottola’s Adventureland. Set in 1987, Adventureland follows James Brennan (Jesse Eisenberg), an aspiring journalist who is forced to take a job at an amusement park so he can afford to attend Columbia University. There, he meets Em (Kristen Stewart), a beautiful girl who James is immediately infatuated with. James hates the park at first, but it grows on him throughout the summer as he smokes pot and attempts to lose his virginity.

This was Mottola’s follow up to the smash hit Superbad. Both are great films, but there is something so genuine about Adventureland that makes it endlessly watchable. The comedy is human and all comes from character. If you’ve ever had a summer job, you’ll instantly relate to these characters and what they’re going through. They’re entirely credible and entirely charming.

All of the performances are strong, especially from Eisenberg and Stewart as the two leads. Eisenberg has proven himself to be a serious talent, and though Stewart has little-to-no range, she works extremely well in this role. The two have great chemistry and I bought into every moment they shared on screen.

Mottola’s script and direction are both sublime, and the commitment to period is often hilarious. He’s proven himself to be as talented a writer as he is a director. The dialogue is great and the story moves smoothly along at just the right pace.

Adventureland is available now on Netflix Instant streaming.


Have you seen Adventureland? Do you want to? Tell us what you think in the comment section below.