Thanks to Roadshow Films we had the chance to see ‘This is where I leave you’ (TIWILY) prior to its Australian cinematic release. This is our review of the film, but – as usual – no matter what we say, we recommend that you still go to your local cinema and see the film because there is no better critic than yourself
Based on the eponymous best-selling novel and directed by Shawn Levy (‘Date night’, ‘The Internship’) this dramedy is packed with a fantastic cast, including: Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Jane Fonda, Adam Driver and Australia’s Rose Byrne. It tells the story of members of a dysfunctional family who are forced to live under the same roof as they mourn the death of their father, in the Jewish tradition of Shiva.
Judd Altman (Jason Bateman) lives in New York. His happy life has been just turned upside down, following the discovery that his wife Quinn (Abigail Spencer) has been having an affair with his boss. To make things worse, he receives a call from his sister Wendy (Tina Fey) telling him that his father has passed away and that her mother (Jane Fonda) is driving her crazy (as usual).
Like many other movies of its kind, TIWILY describes the reality behind forced family gatherings. When this dysfunctional family is forced to stay together, it results in conflicts of ideas, fights and stressful situations. However, as the days pass, the grown-up siblings share childhood memories and counsel each other, in an effort to solve their frustrations, love issues and the loss of their father, while realising that life never works out as expected.
This incredible cast has good chemistry, but the plot and excess of dialogue reveal too much happening with regards to back stories, marriages, lovers and exes, that the film consequently feels busy and flat. However, it has really funny moments courtesy of Jason Bateman, Tina Fey and Adam Driver.
Overall, ‘‘This is where I leave you’ cannot be catalogued simply as a comedy or a drama, but a combination of the two. It features a big bunch of likeable characters and a relatable story that will make you think about your own family.
‘This is where I leave you’ opens in Australian cinemas on Thursday, 23rd October.