Written August 29, 2009
This movie is a snapshot of a failed marriage transitioning into separation. The characters are highly flawed, sometimes sympathetic, and other times truly pathetic and unlikeable. Some of the specifics of the movie are annoyingly poorly drawn, but if you do not focus on the details, the overarching story, style, and acting are very good. The movie is set in 1986, perhaps because these characters seem more likely in retrospect because their flaws seem less likely now, in the way that mullet haircuts are less likely now. If you were a kid at that time, you may see yourself as the children in the movie, and it might remind you to avoid the mistakes of your parents.
Written May 17, 2009
Noah Baumbach's insightful, seeringly realistic portrait of a family in a downward spiral after an initial separation of mother and father (intensely realized by both Laura Linney and Jeff Daniels) is an immensely engrossing film. Based on many autobiographical incidents from his own life, Baumbach keenly envelopes his characters in a quirky atmosphere of contradiciton and consequnce. Many scenes echo the pain and frustration of growing up in a shattered household and the two young boys are well defined and sympathetic. Overall, one of the finest domestic dramas to come out of Hollywoods in years!!
Written May 10, 2013
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Written May 02, 2011
i had heard great things about this movie, but when i finally watched it, i was uninspired. i suppose they were trying to tell a "coming of age" tale of these two boys in a broken home, but the story didn't progress in a way that made me care about any of the characters. it was a series of uncomfortable situations and watching everyone be extremely hurtful to each other and everyone else around them. glad i watched it so that i knew what it was about, but i wouldn't watch it again or recommend it.