BEVERLY HILLS, California — According to "Superbad" writer/director Greg Mottola, he designed his follow-up film "Adventureland" with the hope that it would play like a great pop song. His stars say they can see the comparison.
"It's very emotional," Kristen Stewart said. "It's got a thumping heartbeat at the core of it, and it's got rhythm."
"And the movie is only three minutes long," co-star Jesse Eisenberg teased.
"I don't know if I would use that example necessarily," Ryan Reynolds countered. "I feel like it plays a lot like some of the greatest '80s movies that I loved. I mean the 'Say Anything ... 's — that Cameron Crowe wheelhouse."
Those movies, however, were always driven by an unforgettable soundtrack (it's no coincidence that "Adventureland" and "Say Anything ... " feature songs by the Replacements); an '80s setting ("Adventureland" is loosely based on Mottola's youth); and a sweet-but-pathetic central character, played by Eisenberg but owing a debt to John Cusack's Lloyd Dobler.
"There's so many different elements — it's dramatic, it's funny, it also feels like this one complete experience," Eisenberg said of "Adventureland," which casts the three actors as a love triangle working miserable jobs at a low-rent amusement park. "The movie is very consistent, even though there's all these different elements. So maybe that is kind of similar to a pop song."
At least Reynolds can speak from experience. "I look back at the '80s, and it's, like, really sketchy fashion choices," the 32-year-old actor laughed, thinking about his love scenes with the 18-year-old Stewart. "She looks back at the '80s as exiting the birth canal. So it's a completely different scenario for us both."
"If I had a time machine," 25-year-old Eisenberg said, "I'd probably bring back a pet rock or something. Wait, that was '70s. What was '80s?"
"Um, the Chia Pet?," guessed Stewart, who was born in 1990. "It grew fuzzy."
"You put seeds on the lamb and it grew," Eisenberg remembered. "It was a ceramic lamb or something."
"Or a turtle," Stewart said.
"Either way," Eisenberg grinned. "It's still a stupid item."
As for now, Stewart is happy being a 21st-century movie star and encouraged her loyal "Twilight" admirers to go see "Adventureland" and not spend their money mailing her Chia Pets. "No," she laughed, perhaps remembering Mike Welch's socks. "I'm OK."
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