on 15 April 2014
This is such a nice film. It's easy to watch. The acting is believable and sensitive. Light-hearted and easy to relate to real life.
on 30 October 2013
"Enough Said" (2013 release; 93 min.) brings the story of Eva (played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus), a middle-aged divorcee whose daughter is about to go off the college across the country. As the movie opens, we see Eva make house calls to her clients to provide massages. One evening, Eva tags along with her friends to a party, and there gets introduced to several people, including Albert (played by James Gandolfini), also a middle-aged and divorced (we later learn that his daughter is also about to go off to college). Eva also gets introduced to Marianne (played by Catherine Keener), a well-known poet who is lonely and hires Eva to give her massages (and bend her ear about her lousy ex). Eva and Albert go on a first date, and things are going surprisingly well. Meanwhile Eva is dealing with her daughter's pending departure. At this point we are about 30 min. into the movie, and to tell you more of the plot would surely ruin your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.
Several comments: first, this movie is a tour-de-force of writer-director Nicole Holofcener, best known for her 2006 movie "Friends With Money". Holofcener brings us an outstanding slice of life that really resonated with me (like the main characters, I am middle-aged and divorced, and have gone through the sending off kids to college phase as well). This is not some Hollywood phantasy: instead we get to know (and like) believable characters. Second, the acting performances are nothing short of top-notch. Let's start with Julia Louis-Dreyfus: while there are some laugh-inducing scenes in the movie (as some point she refers to someone as a "human TripAdvisor", ha!), this is mostly a relationship drama, and we get to see Louis-Dreyfus in a dramatic role, which she rarely gets to play. It just makes you wish that she would take on big-screen roles more often (she has done some voice-characters for kids movies, but has rarely, if ever, been in a lead role). Then there is James Gandolfini, in his last major role before his shocking and untimely death earlier this year. Best known for his role in The Sopranos, he plays the big cuddly teddy-bear type guy, and you just can't help but shake your head at his premature departure. It what makes this movie such a bitter-sweet experience. There are a bunch of smaller roles that are equally outstanding, none more so than Catherine Keener (who has appeared in all of Holofcener's movies). Last but not least, there is a wonderful soundtrack, mostly with indie music from artists like the Eels, Neil Halstead, Mideau and others.
This movie has been playing on 2 screens (which is highly unusual) at my local art-house here in Cincinnati for several weeks now, and yet when I went to see recently, it was still packing them in. The screening I saw this at was very well attended indeed, which is GREAT news, as this is a movie that just deserves to be seen. If you are in the mood for a top-notch indie movie that dissects relationships with an honesty and veracity not seen very often, you cannot go wrong with this. "Enough Said" is HIGHLY, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
Julia Louis-Dreyfus and James Gandolfini are a wonderful pair of actors and they make a wonderful pairing in this bittersweet film. They play two divorcees who meet for the first time just as their teenage daughters are about to leave home to go off to college.
In exploring the various relationships, this film asks if it possible to adapt to other people's faults as we get older and grow less tolerant. And can we overcome our fears born of experience? This is a universal story. It may be slight but the wry, empathetic telling of it rings true. Very warmly recommended.
RIP James Gandolfini
on 22 June 2015
Beyond the fact that I very much enjoyed this film I want to focus on the performance of James Gandolfini largely because it was his role in it which encouraged me to buy the dvd.
I anticipated that I would be constantly reminded of 'Tony Soprano' - after-all, James Gandolfini's performance in each of those 6 series was so incredibly mesmerizing that fears of him being completely type-cast were inevitable. To my great joy I found myself asking if, in fact, this was indeed the same actor. Of course I knew it was but never once did I perceive anything about this new character that resembled the mafia don. The look, the voice, the tone, the attitude, even the way he physically carried himself - all a wondeful tribute to just what a terrific actor James Gandolfini was and very sadly is no more.
If it wasn't enough to know that James Gandolfini died at such a young age, watching him in this film, brings home what a marvelous actor he was. We have seen the tough guys, but now he brings the romantic guy with so much going for him. Julia Louis-Dreyfus has accolades coming her way for her character in VEEP, and now she brings this wonderful character to the screen. I cannot say enough good things about these actors and this film.
Nicole Holofcener is the director of 'Enough Said', and she brought home two of the finest performances I have seen this year. A glance, a twitch of the eyebrow, and we know what the character is thinking. This is a funny romantic film,with laugh out loud laughs. Julia Louis-Dreyfus and the late James Gandolfini, are in a word, Magnifique!
Albert, Gandolfini and Eva, Louis-Dreyfus are both divorced parents of teens getting ready for college. Eva is a masseuse and goes from home to home to meet her clients. It is a tough job, listening to these people tell her their problems, but she does OK. Albert works in a Film History Museum. They meet at a party, each one says they have not met anyone that attracts them, but, of course, the more they talk, the more they like. They date, and everything seems fine until it isn't. Both parents dread having their girls leave. Both girls are anxious, but OK about leaving.
Albert and Eva's relationship becomes public knowledge and friends meet them. .Eva has some interesting pals, Sarah played by Toni Collette and Marianne, played by Catherine Keener, who for various reasons have their own problems. Mistakes are made, and things happen, not for the better. The times and places to get to the heart of the matter, is the film itself. The relationships that shatter seem not to be repairable.
What carries this film are the characters and the two we are talking about, Albert and Eva. This is a film that goes from humour to tears in a split second, and that happens because of these characters, their feelings and emotions are on their sleeves. There is a great deal that goes on in this film , and I bid you see it.
Highly Recommended. prisrob 01-14-14
on 26 November 2014
This is an engaging and very well-constructed movie. The deliberate banality of much of the writing has a lot to do with the credibility of the characters, but, of course, given that kind of writing, much is required of the actors to make us interested in them as persons despite their ordinariness -- for in part it is their very ordinariness that enables us as viewers to relate to them. The actors here are well up to the task -- James Gandolfini plays Albert, a low-key, rather easy-going man who nonetheless is capable of some depth of feeling, although he doesn't always broadcast it. Julia Louis-Dreyfus is Eva, a hard-working massage therapist who seems more on edge about what's lacking in her life than Gandolfini's character is, and Catherine Keener is Marianne, Albert's ex-wife, with whom Eva forms a professional and then personal relationship before she realizes that Marianne has been married to Albert. The intriguing thing for us is that Eva begins a relationship with Albert that quickly becomes serious at the same time that she is hearing Marianne talk about how unsatisfactory he was as a husband. When Eva realizes that Marianne is talking about the man she (Eva) is developing strong feelings for, it makes her wonder about the validity of these feelings and question her own judgment. To complicate things further, her knowledge of Marianne's attitude begins to affect the way she behaves towards Albert -- even before Albert and Marianne discover that Eva knows both of them.
To avoid spoilers, let me just say that when Albert finds out that Eva has been talking to Marianne, it complicates the relationship. To the credit of the director, Nicole Holofcener, however, our interest isn't just in how these complications will be resolved but in what the movie shows about what love requires. To show this is the purpose of what seems like a sub-plot but is really central to the movie's effect: the coincidence that Eva and Albert (and their divorced spouses, of course,) have daughters who are getting prepared to leave home for college. Both Eva and Albert are full of typical parental worries about this, which, characteristically, Eva tend to verbalize much more openly than the low-key Albert. Both love their daughters, and as we see them negotiating their anxieties in their own ways and with their ex-spouses, we realize that loving is something that one doesn't have to have reasons for. We begin to realize that, in listening to Marianne, Eva was starting to look for reasons to love or not love Albert, not realizing that all of Marianne's "reasons" were after-the-fact rationalizations of what irritated her about Albert and had nothing to do with why she loved him and married him in the first place. Eva, without quite realizing it, begins to look for reasons to love -- when her love for her daughter should be telling her that she doesn't need them (and that looking for them might be destructive). Love sometimes fails, of course, and then one can articulate things one didn't like about one's spouse, AS IF these were the reasons for the failure. Eva's ex-husband is a perfectly nice man whom Eva doesn't run down as Marianne ran down Albert even though the marriage didn't work out. Both of them see their daughter off in what is perhaps the understated emotional climax of the movie, and it makes emotional sense that it is after that send-off that Eva and Albert meet again in an equally understated scene in which at least the possibility of understanding becomes open.
What's impressive about the movie, apart from the acting, is the way the scenes are disposed -- and secondary characters are disposed -- to make us understand that a kind of talking can be often the cause of a problem rather than a solution. Marianne isn't a bad person, and she isn't aware whom she's talking to -- she's just venting, and her venting is in the form of giving reasons, and reasons are seductive, as Eva learns to her cost. "Enough said" is a great title. Problems arise when too much is said, and perhaps Eva's friends and confidants, the couple played by Toni Collette and Ben Falcone, are other examples of too much being said. Unlike Marianne, though, they know whom they are talking to, and the result isn't pleasant.
on 31 December 2015
Wow! I find it fascinating when a movie succeeds in drawing you emotionally into the very minds of the characters!! How do they manage that? Every expression, every little movement and every word that is uttered weaves a web that sucks you into its delicate yet steely grip. The conversations, the scene sequences, and side characters with their own stories all mesh into a tight, meaningful and purposeful narration of our deepest emotions and insecurities, and of course, love that triumphs over all! Only actors like James Gandolfini and Julia Louis-Dreyfus can pull this off. Sorry James isn't around to give us more of his masterclass, but I shall be looking out for Julia!
on 22 March 2015
I really thought I'd like this, a 'grown up' rom com, or so I was led to believe. And James Gandolfini is usually worth watching. But I found the characters unlikable, some of the dialogue way too obvious, and overall the film was disappointing. I wasn't expecting laugh out loud comedy, but to me it lacked even wry subtlety, overdoing what I can only describe as a certain type of American over-analytical neurotic angst, so that I didn't care about anyone's outcome in the end. It's clear that other viewers loved it but it didn't do it for me, and I've taken other Nicole Holofcener films that sounded intriguing off my watch list as a result.
I loved this film! I loved the simplicity of telling a story about 'real' people.... middle aged people, who have already had so many experiences in their life.... having had children, marriages, divorces etc etc. The acting was superb, the characters believable and the storyline was full of little suprises, sweet and funny moments, and very touching moments, as we watch two people's relationship develop.
This is not your typical Hollywood movie, but if you like the simplicity of a character driven, realistic story about love, and all its complications, then I'm sure you will enjoy this.
on 25 March 2014
I love James Gandolfini, he was fabulous in The Sopranos. He was also very good in this film. Shame he's passed away. Enough Said!