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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    ‘Enough Said’ boasts superb performances

    	Fox Searchlight Pictures

    Fox Searchlight Pictures

    What does the dating landscape look like when in your 40’s or 50’s? “Enough Said” addresses this question in a charming way, with elements of both comedy and drama.

    The film is a mature comedy, that delves into the world of post-divorce dating. In one of his final leading roles, James Gandolfini delivers an effortless performance that is complemented by Julia Louis-Dreyfus’.

    Eva (Louis-Dreyfus) is a middle-aged, divorced masseuse who makes house calls to clients that irk her in one way or another. While at a party with her married friends, Will and Sarah (Ben Falcone and Toni Collette), she makes two new acquaintances: Albert (Gandolfini) and Marianne (Catherine Keener).

    Marianne becomes a client, and ultimately a friend, and she proceeds to vent to Eva by perpetually knocking her ex-husband. Eva and Albert, despite both saying that they were not attracted to anyone at the party, begin to date. They are also both facing empty nests, as their only daughters are preparing to leave for college.

    The relationship between Albert and Eva is a unique screen romance. Given the way they interact with one another, one would never have guessed that these two characters had been previously married. They awkwardly flirt with each other like two school children that are on their first date.

    They make goofy jokes and then steal a glance to see if the other person laughed. Although the portly, balding Albert is not the stereotypically attractive man, Eva quickly grows to like him, and they fall for each other.

    Albert, with all of his quirks (like swirling guacamole with a chip so as not to get any onions), could have easily devolved into a cartoonish character. However, Gandolfini treats the character with respect, and delivers a performance that makes it feel like Albert is not just one dimensional.

    This praise is not given lightly. Louis-Dreyfus has a livelier, comedic role compared to Gandolfini’s dry humor. She effectively portrays a woman who is optimistic yet anxious about falling in love again, and is able to deftly navigate between being both the driving comedic and dramatic force.

    The movie explores many themes and situations that help it strike significant chords with an older audience. Only one couple in the film is not divorced, and even they seem to toe the line of openly admitting that they are miserable.

    Everyone comes with baggage and a kid that they split 50-50 with their ex. This is a story about getting back on the horse, about venturing into the murky, dark waters of dating after marriage and love that didn’t pan out the first time.

    The film as a whole, along with director Nicole Holofcener, approaches this without a hint of cliché or insincerity. Still, younger members of the audience will be able to empathize with the situations of uncertainty and heartbreak, and the film may open their eyes to what dating is like 20 or 30 years down the road.

    Dramatic enough to be insightful, yet light enough to not become bogged down, “Enough Said” shows that there is life, hope and love after marriage.

    Grade: B

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