Movie review: Enough Said

Independent_Box_Office_James_Gandolfini_s-d8b98077ddd345518d64b1a0a169f649September 30, 2013 – I apologize for mistakenly publishing an unfinished draft of this review yesterday. That version has been deleted, and the full review appears below.

As long as baby boomers go to the movies, we can be certain the studios will make romantic dramas and comedies about people falling in love later in life. Maybe not as often as the typical romcoms, but with Meryl Streep and Diane Keaton still active in the business, we’re sure to be treated to at least one top quality gem per year.

Now, we can add James Gandolfini and Julia Louis-Dreyfus to the middle-aged love story mix.

In their current release “Enough Said”, they are the perfect on screen pair. The story is intelligent and so real, I almost felt like I was watching some of my friends on screen.

The low-budget film, from writer/director Nicole Holofcener is witty, charming, bittersweet and full of great conversation.

Holofcener is no stranger to the genre, giving us such adult relationship stories as “Friends with Money” and “Lovely and Amazing”. Aside from Gandolfini and Louis-Dreyfus, she casts the usual suspect, Catherine Keener, who often appears in her movies, and Toni Collette. All are superb.

The premise of the story is unique, which is hard to do in the romcom business. Single mom, Eva, (Louis-Dreyfus) spends her days working as a masseuse. She also dreads the day her daughter will depart for college, which is quickly approaching. She meets Albert (Gandolfini), a teddy bear of a man with a sweet disposition, who also faces an empty nest come fall. The problem is that Albert doesn’t fit the expectations some women look for in a mate, and Eva is quite aware of that but continues to date him anyway. Their romance gets a little complicated as Eva befriends a new client, Marianne (Keener), who rags on her ex-husband excessively, and soon we discover that Marianne’s ex is Eva’s new beau, which makes her question her own choices in a mate.

Louis-Dreyfus proves her ability to play a leading lady and carry a film. Gandolfini is wonderful as Albert, and at showing his softer side, a huge difference from the other roles I’ve seen him in. I didn’t watch the Sopranos, but am familiar with the character, and have seen him in several films. He will be missed.

“Enough Said” offers a variety of emotions. I laughed heartily at the scene where Eva brings Albert to a dinner party to finally meet her friends, while I almost shed some tears in a few scenes I won’t mention, since they may spoil the plot. I enjoy a movie that can do that to me.

Rating: 4 – There is no reason why you can’t wait to see this on DVD, but if you enjoy a film experience in the theater, it’s one of the only good selections out there right now.

Rating system:

5. Great Movie, see it now
4. Good movie and worth the price of admission
3. It’s OK, but I’d wait for the DVD 
2. Proceed with caution

1. Don’t bother

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