Based on the true childhood experiences of Noah Baumbach and his brother, The Squid and the Whale tells the touching story of two young boys dealing with their parents' divorce in Brooklyn in the 1980s.
A husband-and-wife team play detective, but not in the traditional sense. Instead, the happy duo helps others solve their existential issues, the kind that keep you up at night, wondering what it all means.
Wilson Joel is a man in trouble. There's a searing pain in his gut that he can't tolerate and a dazed quietness to his struggle as he tries to maintain his equilibrium. Wilson is attempting to move on from the sudden and inexplicable suicide of his wife. His mother-in-law is there for him, but her sympathies turn quickly. He has an employer that seems to want to help him, and a workmate who wants him for herself. But nothing and no one can give Wilson solace; so, he seeks oblivion. It is not the usual alcohol or drugs. Wilson inhales fumes from gasoline cans and model airplane fuel and finds temporary salvation in the company of remote-control model enthusiasts. However, nothing that provides him relief really lasts. Written by
Sujit R. Varma
Before you watch this film you must ask yourself, how depressed am I? There is not a bright light in this film anywhere. If you are already on the edge and don't want to go over, I would not recommend watching this film.
That said, Phillip Seymour Hoffman gave an Oscar-worthy performance. He was completely terrific and should have won the Oscar for this film. Kathy Bates was great too. Everyone was great. The story was believable and well scripted.
But, unless you enjoy slumming in depression, I would forgo watching this film. There are too many other films that offer even the smallest ray of positivity to spend your time on this one. A tiny smile generated from a film is, in my humble opinion, better than being left looking for the razor blades.
I gave it a 7 because of the craftsmanship exhibited by the actors and filmmakers. If I had to give it a rating on how it made me feel afterward, I'd probably have to give it a 1.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?