Cha Cha Real Smooth on Apple TV+: a serious contender for the Oscars? – Cinema news

Available since last Friday on Apple TV+, this dramatic comedy starring Dakota Johnson has everything from a small independent film that can become big.

What is it about ?

A freshly graduated but somewhat lost student, Andrew, 22, is forced to return to live with his family in New Jersey. Particularly good at setting the mood, he landed a job as a room driver during the bat and bar mitzvahs of his little brother’s friends. When he befriends Domino, a young mother, and her daughter Lola, Andrew finally discovers a vocation, even if it is not necessarily his or the one that corresponds to him.

Cha Cha Real Smooth, a film written and directed by Cooper Raiff starring Cooper Raiff, Dakota Johnson, Vanessa Burghardt. Available on Apple TV+

A feel good movie

Presented at Sundance last January, Cha Cha Real Smooth had a sensational debut by winning the coveted audience award. Last year, Apple presented in this same CODA festival which won the Oscar for best film, a first for a film broadcast on a streaming platform.

Can lightning strike twice? Like Sian Heder, the director of CODA, Texan Cooper Raiff is directing his second feature film here after having already made a name for himself with his first film, Shithouse. Actor and director, he has already established himself as a singular voice in the landscape of American independent cinema.

In Cha Cha Real Smooth, he plays Andrew, a boy who is a little lost after his studies at university and who discovers a talent on which he had not bet on at the start. But it’s the meeting with Domino, played by Dakota Johnson – also producer of the film – mother of a young autistic girl who connects well with Andrew, who will really upset him.


Cooper Raiff and Dakota Johnson

It’s a film about deep feelings that we can have with others, about special relationships between individuals“says Dakota Johnson to us about the strong bonds that are created between these three characters. Because Cha Cha Real Smooth tells both a love story and an initiatory journey, as Cooper Raiff explains:

It interested me to explore the journey of these two main characters, Domino and Andrew. What is going on in their lives and how are they reacting to this relationship. How they support each other in these times of transition and grow stronger. Whatever the moment of our life in which we find ourselves, we always try to grow out of it in order to fully find our place in society.

The actor-director plays with emotions, in a mixture of humor and heartbreaking moments. He carefully avoids getting involved where we are going to imagine him. Yes, his film has good arguments to follow in CODA’s footsteps.

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