A widower whose book about coping with loss turns him into a best-selling self-help guru, falls for the hotel florist where his seminar is given, only to learn that he hasn't yet truly confronted his wife's passing.
Four women friends: three are wealthy and married plus there's Olivia, a former teacher who's now a maid. The marriages are in various states of health: Franny and Matt are happy and very rich. Christine and David write screenplays together, are remodeling their house, and argue. Jane is angry all the time and Aaron, who's an attentive husband, strikes everyone as gay. Franny sets up Olivia with a friend of hers, Mike, a personal trainer, and Olivia takes him with her to a couple of housecleaning jobs. A benefit dinner for ALS, an awkward guy named Marty whose place Olivia cleans, and a French maid's outfit figure in the story. Is there more to life than its problems?Written by
Outside the restaurant where Mike and Olivia have their date, if you look closely you can see a black fuzzy mass on the patio of the House of Pies restaurant across the street. According to Nicole Holofcener on the DVD commentary, those were all members of the paparazzi. See more »
When Olivia follows Mike into a restaurant, clearly visible behind her is a Grip/Gaffer Flag on a stand blocking light in front of the window. The flag is noticeable in two shots and disappears in one. See more »
So the corrugated metal not only reflects the beauty of the common, off-the-shelf material but also emphasizes the invisible line between the old and the new construction.
Wait. There'll be a line?
Just let him finish.
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Not only is this not a groundbreaking film, it's not a particularly pleasant, or enjoyable one either. It centers around a group of early 40s-somethings who hate their lives, their spouses and their place in the world. The casting of Aniston is strange, as she is easily 10 years younger then her circle of friends.
While you'd think that the film is trying to state "happiness has nothing to do with how much money you have", the opposite appears to be true as the more elevated couples do have less problems. And, if fact, all of Aniston's problems are seemingly solved when she manages to snag a wealthy (albeit slacker) guy herself. While the three married couples do have children, they don't add anything to the story, as they seem more like convenient accessories than meaningful relations. While that may be a creative choice, the fact that it runs across all three couples identically makes me inclined to believe it's just sloppy, two-dimensional screen writing. None of the story lines are brought full circle and the entire exercise feels like a long death march towards irrelevance. Several interesting notions are addressed, but none closely examined or fully developed. While there are poignant moments and some nice creative decisions (i.e. allowing the actors to look their age), this genre has been mined before to better results (i.e. "Grand Canyon").
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