Almost certainly the least offensive movie ever to bear a PG-13 rating, Post Grad casts Alexis Bledel as a recent college graduate—hence the title—whose spotless résumé and sunny disposition fail to land her the job of her dreams immediately after she leaves college. (The job of her dreams involves “the finest publishing house in all of L.A.,” which suggests that either the film takes place in an alternate universe where such a thing exists, or her character is dumber than her GPA suggests.) When she’s forced to move back home, neither the encouragement of her platonic-but-interested BFF (Zach Gilford) nor the support of her sitcom-wacky family keeps her from sinking into an extremely mild case of post-collegiate malaise, interrupted from time to time by inoffensive shenanigans and easily resolved crises. It all leads up to a climactic soapbox-derby race, possibly because the filmmakers thought a pie-eating contest or a square-dance competition might provide too much excitement for the audience’s more delicate members.
Though it isn’t a good movie, Post Grad does at least seem like an appropriate project for parts of the cast and crew. Bledel and Gilford face a difficult transition of their own. Both have moved on from generally excellent TV shows—Gilmore Girls and Friday Night Lights, respectively—while director Vicky Jenson is making her live-action feature debut after a long career in animation. Unfortunately, they’ve thrown their lot in with a script as wholesome as oatmeal, and just as bland. Bledel and Gilford enjoy a pleasantly chemistry-free flirtation between episodic asides that include a wacky trip to a funeral home and a cat funeral that goes awry, scenes that beg for unearned guffaws. It’s not for lack of trying, but a when a film whose cast includes Michael Keaton, Jane Lynch, Fred Armisen, Craig Robinson, Demetri Martin, and the now rarely seen Carol Burnett can’t scare up more than a smattering of laughs, the patient was never meant to live in the first place.