Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist (2008)
At first glance, Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist (subsequently referred to as Nick and Norah for obvious reasons) might resemble the reiteration of teenage sex-comedies which has been poured out of Hollywood in recent years. Both the arrogant, selfish prom queen, the childish sex-fixated sidekicks, and the huge ultimate party are present. Despite this, Nick and Norah is significantly different. Most importantly, it takes its characters (read: leads) seriously, and is able to portray funny anecdotes of teenage life without resorting to overblown scenarios. Casting the credible and likeable Michael Cera along with the authentic Kat Dennings certainly was a lucky choice in this respect, and together they make Nick and Norah a sincere and moving romance in which even the sex scene is handled with a sense of realism. Instead of staged over-awkwardness or cliched porn fantasy depiction, Nick and Norah's first sexual encounter is attractive and funny because of the natural attractiveness and fun we all have experiences in these situations. The film isn't free of simplified characterizations (like Alexis Dziena's Tris) or some dragged out segments (the search for Caroline), but as directed by Peter Sollett, in pseudo-realtime depicting a night's events, Nick and Norah has a simple freshness to it that makes it both inspirational and affecting, without making you hate any of the supporting characters.