The female best friend relationship is always a complex one. Factor in one of them being a lesbian and you've got the dynamic that comprises Susanna Fogel's debut film Life Partners. Sasha (Leighton Meester, frumping it up a bit in a post-Blair Waldorf role) and Paige (Gillian Jacobs) could not be more opposed in terms of their personality types. Paige is high-strung and determined to always get what she wants, whereas Sasha is laidback and prone to having casual relationships that never lead anywhere. Yet somehow, their friendship works based on a shared love of trash TV and essentially because they're both single 29-year-olds.
This isn't to say that their friendship lacks substance, but it is very clearly based on familiarity and convenience. Often joking about the dates they go on and the people they have sex with, never imagining anything will progress beyond one encounter, Sasha is blindsided when Paige actually likes someone she goes on an internet date with. Tim (Adam Brody, in his usual "likable guy" role), a dermatologist, is surprisingly charming and intelligent, barring his graphic tees and tendency to say "Gotcha."
Tim quickly ingratiates himself into Paige's life, leaving little room where there was once a gulf for Sasha. Although Paige still "makes time" for Sasha, the distance between them is undeniable. This sends Sasha on her own emotional bender, as she continues to ask her parents for money to supplement her receptionist job income. They happily do so under the pretense that Sasha is interested in making an album using her previously proven talent. However, as the film progresses, it's easy to see she couldn't be less into music.
It's only after her friendship with Paige deteriorates that Sasha discovers that, all this time, she's failed to "get a life" of her own. And this is one of the most salient/alarming messages of Life Partners: that no matter how close you think you are with someone or how much you rely on them, there's nothing stopping them from letting you fall flat on your ass in the end. Though, of course, because it's a Hollywood movie, it isn't quite so bleak as that. But perhaps if Leighton Meester weren't in the role (Kristen Bell a.k.a. the voice of Gossip Girl was originally going to be cast in her part) and the film had just a bit more courage in its convictions, we would see that Paige would not have forced herself to be there for Sasha in the end. That a sense of duty would not have ultimately prevailed in the end, as Paige had gotten "her own life" separate from Sasha. Because, in spite of it being the twenty-first century, the only movie to have ever championed the benefits of platonic love over romantic love is pretty much just Frances Ha.