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.
Jon and Wendy Savage are two siblings who have spent their adult years trying to recover from the abuse of their abusive father, Lenny Savage. Suddenly, a call comes in that his girlfriend has died, he cannot care for himself with his dementia and her family is dumping him on his children. Despite the fact Jon and Wendy have not spoken to Lenny for twenty years and he is even more loathsome than ever, the Savage siblings feel obliged to take care of him. Now together, brother and sister must come to terms with the new and painful responsibilities with their father now affecting their lives even as they struggle with their own personal demons Lenny helped create. Written by
Kenneth Chisholm (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Jon Savage drives his Polish girlfriend to the airport at 6:30 AM, in broad daylight. But in November in Buffalo, it would be pitch dark at this hour (even on November 1, sunrise isn't until 7:46). See more »
This film, along with "Away from Her" are the best elder-films I've seen all year (2007).
There is an honesty to the movie about a brother and sister relationship that is genuine and heart warming. Philip Seymour Hoffman (Jon, the professor) and Laura Linney (as Wendy, aspiring playwright)are perfectly cast in the roles of the sister and brother who have to deal with their obnoxious, foul-mouthed elderly father, Lenny, played by Philip Bosco in a riveting performance.
Their childhoods have been difficult, abuse is hinted at along with a runaway mother. They are now confronted with the care and responsibility of their father who has been deemed incompetent (and penniless). The effects of their childhood on these now adult children is played out well. They are incapable of intimacy with potential partners and even with each other.
How they slowly gain an understanding of themselves and each other is an ongoing major thread of the movie and is beautifully depicted. A one of a kind sibling movie. 9 out of 10. Recommended.
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