A Simple Favor: Paul Feig seemingly understands the value of a purely entertaining film, far-fetched story and all; well-crafted as it may be, it happily embraces its pulpiness and doesn’t aim to be more than efficient fun. The plot is very busy, making sharp turns at every possible opportunity, a pastiche of a number of film classics; much of the joy comes from the two opposing central characters. They are very well-defended by the performers: Anna Kendrick is spot on as the bubbly, cute naïf unaware of her own smartness; Blake Lively is equally good as the manipulative, much aware of her own smarminess, beauty; Bashir Salahuddin is very good as the unconvinced police officer. Cinematographer John Schwartzman gives the film a very slick look and makes good use of the beautiful house where a lot of the action takes place. The use of French pop songs gives the film some of its unusual charm.