16 June 2014 7:16 AM, PDT | The Playlist | See recent The Playlist news »

A general rule of thumb: if Jeffrey Tambor appears in one or two scenes out of a film, it’s a safe bet those are the best one or two scenes overall. As a trespassing landlord fond of tenant hookups and unannounced showers in their homes, Tambor all but runs away with “Trouble Dolls,” the writing and directorial debut of Jess Weixler (“Teeth”) and Jennifer Prediger (“A Teacher”), but his scenes prove damaging—they bookend the film, leaving 80 minutes of fitfully wry and unusual humor in between. The reason for Tambor’s brief part is due to his role as instigator. He lays out an ultimatum for the film’s central twentysomething roomies, Olivia and Nicole (Prediger and Weixler) to pay their substantial backlog of rent, or lose their NYC apartment. Not that the place has much value left anyway: jars of Olivia’s natural remedies spill all over not Nicole’s unfinished art projects, »

- Charlie Schmidlin

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