Standing Up Review: Four Comedians, One Dream

Standing Up aka Drôle on Netflix is created by Call My Agent’s Fanny Herrero, helmed by directors Farid Bentoumi and Bryan Marciano. The French series documents the life, struggles, opportunities and desires of people in the field of stand up comedy. It stars Mariama Gueye as Aïssatou, Younes Boucif as Nezir, Jean Siuen as Bling, Elsa Guedj as Apolline along with Pascale Arbillot and Ahmed Shawky Shaheen. There are a total of six episodes in the series, each with a runtime of 40-50 minutes. Subtitles and audio are present both in English and French for this latest release.

– Drôle aka Standing Up Review Does Not Contain Any Spoilers –

Standing Up: Do Dreams Ever Come True?

Netflix’s French special Standing Up picks up the fragile but very important element in one’s life- a dream career. The series closely follows the life of four people who are linked by this one dream of having a successful stand-up comedy career but the inhibitions in their life hold them back. Sometimes it is financial, sometimes it is romantic, but the struggles are always real and relatable.

The first episode starts with the show introducing us to our four main characters, their individual struggles, friends and more. We see Nezir in the opening shot delivering food and reminding himself that how he is poor and that is a trait that never comes in handy. The frame simultaneously shifts to Aïssatou trying to put up posters for her upcoming comedy theatre show but is shooed away from most places. Both our characters meet at the Drôle Comedy club where we are introduced to our third main character, Bling- a remainder of a man who was once a TV star and is now struggling to make jokes for a living.

The fourth and final character comes in late in the first episode after we are privy to some ruckus and drama. We see Nezir encounter Appoline, who reveals to be attending a comedy club for the first time but, is eager and opportunistic to know what happens in the world of stand-up comedy.

Also Read: Without Saying Goodbye Review: Another Formulaic Romantic Drama

Throughout the next six episodes, Standing Up focuses on Nezir’s financial struggle, Bling’s desperation to be famous, Aïssatou’s family falling apart while her career skyrockets and Appoline’s first steps into the world that looks oh-so-funny, but isn’t always filled with glitz and hilarity.

Topics of racism in the French society, the hardships of truly ever making your dream a lucrative way to feed your stomach, the cracking friendships and, the growing world, everything makes Standing Up a special watch. It never undermines any of its characters and helps each take a stance for themselves. However, what ironically does lack in this show is the scripted comedy sets that our characters produced. It could be the lack of spontaneity or the rehearsal of the same set a million times or the translation that misleads the audiences, but the show is hardly capable of generating a good laugh out of its viewers.

Standing Up: Final Verdict

Nonetheless, Standing Up makes up for a good, interesting drama concerning the four struggling lives. The characters are charming and mean in their own unique way and they interest you in knowing what happens next in their lives. The show is bold and beautiful and leaving aside how badly the scripted comedy is shot (except for Nezir’s sets), this show definitely makes up for a good binge-watch.

You can stream all the episodes of the French dramedy Standing Up aka Drôle now on Netflix.

Also Read: Black Crab Review: Noomi Rapace’s Thriller Is Predictable Yet Adventurous

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Netflix's Standing Up aka Drôle shows the hardships and blessings of being a stand-up comedian.

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Netflix's Standing Up aka Drôle shows the hardships and blessings of being a stand-up comedian. Standing Up Review: Four Comedians, One Dream