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.
Acting under the cover of a Hollywood producer scouting a location for a science fiction film, a CIA agent launches a dangerous operation to rescue six Americans in Tehran during the U.S. hostage crisis in Iran in 1980.
Over a meal in a French restaurant, Sy poses a conundrum to his fellow diners: Is the essence of life comic or tragic? For the sake of argument, he tells a story, which the others then embellish to illustrate their takes on life. The story starts as follows: A young Manhattan couple, Park Avenue princess Laurel and tippling actor Lee, throw a dinner party to impress Lee's would-be producer when their long-lost friend Melinda appears at their front door, bedraggled and woebegone. In the tragic version of what happens next, the beautiful intruder is a disturbed woman who got bored with her Midwestern doctor-husband and dumped him for a photographer. Her husband took the children away and she spiraled into a suicidal depression that landed her straight-jacketed in a mental ward. In the comic version, Melinda is childless and a downstairs neighbor to the dinner hosts, who are ambitious Indy filmmaker Susan and under-employed actor Hobie. Back and forth the stories go, contrasting the ... Written by
Sujit R. Varma
During filming, Radha Mitchell was the only actor who had the entire script. The other actors just had their storyline. See more »
In one of the beginning scenes for the "drama" version of Melinda's tale the battery pack for her microphone creates a very noticeable bulge in the lower back of her shirt. Whenever she stands up from leaning on the kitchen table the bulge turns into the shape of a square. See more »
Try it, Hobie, it's good manners.
Since when do I have good manners?
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Woody Allen has lost his ability to write dialogue or characters that are clearly distinguishable from each other. This is the case with "Melinda and Melinda," where all the characters speak with Allen's generic pseudo-sophistication and have problems and points of view that are not relatable to anyone outside of a four block radius of where Allen lives. They also share the same curious condition of being able to afford multi-million dollar Manhattan apartments that appear to have been designed by professional decorators regardless of their financial situation or what they do for a living.
The only character who exists outside of this dull mindset is Will Ferrel as the obligatory Woody Allen surrogate. Although he does not simply come off as merely doing a Woody Allen impression (like Kenneth Branagh in the god-awful "Celebrity"), Ferrel lacks the charm or charisma that the real Woody had when he was playing the part himself in his best movies.
The end result is another in a string of self indulgent bores from a once-great filmmaker who has been trading in on his former reputation for years.
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