Nothing says "plot device" like an impromptu vacation, and such is the case with Apartment Troubles, an aimless, take-things-as-they-come comic jaunt from first-time writer-directors Jess Weixler and Jennifer Prediger. Upon learning of their impending eviction from an illegal New York City sublet, roommates Nicole (Weixler), a stubbornly off-the-grid artist, and Olivia (Prediger), a softhearted aspiring actress with a mystic streak, feel the universe signaling that they should ignore the problem and get away for the weekend.
It says a great deal about the kind of universe these two are living in that they're able to hop on a private jet belonging to Nicole's adoptive father (he isn't speaking to her, but she's buddy-buddy with the pilot) and head to L.A., where they plan to mooch off Nicole's aunt (Megan Mullally), a judge on an America's Got Talent–like show. She greets them with a glass of wine in hand and the news that Nicole's immediate family is already on vacation -- without her.
That dark streak of humor runs through Weixler and Prediger's screenplay -- an early scene has the girls cremating a cat on a rooftop barbecue, while the funniest sequence sees them trapped in a car with a wild-eyed, alarmingly medicated Will Forte -- and it indicates that Apartment Troubles could have turned into something much meaner and more to the point, à la Nicole Holofcener. But Weixler and Prediger's vision is too vague to really get to the meat of these characters. During an improvised inspirational speech to a subway car full of commuters, Olivia interrupts herself to ask, "Do I seem weird right now?" The joke, of course, is that nobody would know.