This Is Where I Leave You (2014)





Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Adam Driver, Rose Byrne, Corey Stoll, Kathryn Hahn, Connie Britton, Timothy Olyphant, Abigail Spencer, Jane Fonda, Aaron Lazar, Ben Schwartz, Cade Lappin, Debra Monk, Will Swenson


When their father passes away, four grown siblings are forced to return to their childhood home and live under the same roof together for a week, along with their over-sharing mother and an assortment of spouses, exes and might-have-beens.


I am really surprised by the amount of bad reviews this title got. Lot of people said you must be Jewish and/or in your 30's or 40's to enjoy this film. Now I can't see why I, an atheist in my 20's, I enjoyed it.

Having said that, based on Jonathan Tropper's novel, This Is Where I Leave You is a brilliant, sweet, and meaningful dramedy, and even though it doesn't manage to gracefully alternate the laughter and tears, it still has its moments, and it made me both smile and move.

Adapted by Jonathan Tropper himself, the screenplay is clever, and tight. Maybe the intelligent dialogue between grown-ups and the lack of car chases and explosions is the reason why people didn't like it.
Of course, you can't build 10 characters in 103 minutes the way you can in more than three-hundred pages, still the characters are developed. Also, there are many storylines so you really have to pay attention to pretty much everything to not miss something important.

Director Shawn Levy, mostly known for mediocre films like "Night at the Museum" and "The Internship", managed to craft something wonderful from Topper's screenplay.

The starry cast does mediocre job. While some do a great job, others completely fail. Jason Bateman and Jane Fonda deliver terrific performances - I'm thankful she has been casted instead of Goldie Hawn. Tina Fey, better known as a comedian, surprised me with a great performance. While he shines in his previous films, Corey Soll looks a bit lost in this one. Adam Driver gives an awful, one-dimensional performance. Rose Byrne tries her best, and has some chemistry with Bateman, but unfortunately her character is nothing more than a love interest.


Judd Altman: It's hard to see people from your past when your present is so cataclysmically screwed up.

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