RELEASE: October 5
DIRECTOR: Julian Farino
CAST: Hugh Laurie, Leighton Meester, Catherine Keener, Oliver Platt, Allison Janney, Adam Brody, Alia Shawkat
This suburban comedy of manners is something of a hit-and-miss affair, but it’s got a witty script and one of the fall’s best ensemble casts. Laurie and Keener are a rich couple whose marriage is in the dumps, Platt and Janney are their best friends across the street, and Meester is their flighty daughter — whose sudden affair with Laurie turns the block upside down. Somewhat predictable shenanigans ensue, but Ian Helfer and Jay Reiss’ script has a stillness and melancholy at its center, and the portrayal of the May-December romance rings true: the pair are cute enough together, but the relationship isn’t about chemistry anyway. It’s about desperation and despair and desire and the need to stir up trouble, and all sorts of other outside agitators. The Oranges understands that, and finds the truth beyond it. Plus, Shawkat’s arid-dry delivery hasn’t been this well used since Arrested Development.