If you are over 70, or under 40, and don’t remember the iconic scene from High Fidelity (2000), see below:
Although the references to music and artists are way beyond my understanding, John Cusack and Jack Black’s taste in music is impeccable (usually). Now, turn the tables (pun intended). In the High Fidelity (2020) TV series available on Hulu or Apple TV+, the “unlucky in love” record store owner is now female, Robyn “Rob” Brooks. Her choice of music is just as eclectic; her penchant for lists just as prominent. While this version may not make #14 on Rotten Tomatoes list of Best Romantic Comedies, it brings back lots of memories. So, what’s the downside? Two hours of mopeyness in a movie is a lot; five hours of “dysfunctional loop” in a series may be a bridge too far. I give High Fidelity 3.5 Gavels and it receives an 85% Rotten Tomatoes rating with an 82% Audience score.
Rob Brooks, owner of Championship Vinyl, just can’t get over her latest break-up with Russell “Mac” McCormack. He is #5 on her list of five biggest heartbreaks. Approaching 30, she doesn’t understand why she is doomed to be rejected. Will tracking her exes down give her the answers she seeks? Or, is it just another in a long line of bad ideas?
An accomplished actress, Zoe Kravitz (Rob) has quite the pedigree. Her mother is actress Lisa Bonet (The Cosby Show), her father is singer Lenny Kravitz, and her stepfather is Jason Momoa (Aquaman). Jake Lacy (Clyde) is one of Rob’s many love interests. At times, he reminds me of an American Hugh Grant.
“Making a play list is like writing a love letter. It tells a story.” So says Rob, as she makes us feel a tad (okay a lot) inferior about our knowledge of music. Yet, it is enlightening to be introduced to new artists and their works. Despite 10 episodes, one wonders how hard-drinking Rob came to own Championship Vinyl. While the store seems to have few customers, money does not seem to be a problem. And, she is hardly a role model. Yet, our own past relationships make it easy to empathize with Rob, sometimes painfully so. But, do we really want to dwell on the past? In the end, High Fidelity gives a glimmer of hope for Rob and the future.