Two highway road workers spend the summer of 1988 away from their city lives. The isolated landscape becomes a place of misadventure as the men find themselves at odds with each other and the women they left behind.
Pete and Debbie are both about to turn 40, their kids hate each other, both of their businesses are failing, they're on the verge of losing their house, and their relationship is threatening to fall apart.
A Princeton admissions officer who is up for a major promotion takes a professional risk after she meets a college-bound alternative school kid who just might be the son she gave up years ago in a secret adoption.
Shy 14-year-old Duncan goes on summer vacation with his mother, her overbearing boyfriend, and her boyfriend's daughter. Having a rough time fitting in, Duncan finds an unexpected friend in Owen, manager of the Water Wizz water park.
Dispatched from his basement room on an errand for his widowed mother, slacker Jeff might discover his destiny (finally) when he spends the day with his unhappily married brother as he tracks his possibly adulterous wife.
Two French Canadian ne'er-do-wells travel to New York City with a scheme to get rich quick selling Christmas trees. Easygoing charmer Rene (Paul Rudd) clashes with misanthropic ex-con Dennis (Paul Giamatti), whose wife Rene just stole. Still, this odd couple must make an honest go of it in this fresh buddy comedy co-starring Sally Hawkins, by the director of the indie breakout hit Junebug. Written by
Surprisingly sad considering it stars Paul Giamatti and Paul Rudd!
'ALL IS BRIGHT': Three Stars (Out of Five)
Paul Giamatti and Paul Rudd star in this comedy-drama film that's a lot more serious (and less comedic) than I was expecting (with that pair). It's a Christmas movie about two losers from Canada trying to sell Christmas trees in New York City. It was directed by Phil Morrison (who also directed the 2005 indie critical darling 'JUNEBUG') and written by first time film writer Melissa James Gibson. It's a lot more of a downer than it looks like (in the trailers) and isn't really that funny but it is a somewhat interesting character study.
Giamatti plays an ex-convict named Dennis, who just got out of prison in Quebec, Canada. His wife, Therese (Amy Landecker) is now sleeping with another man, Rene (Rudd). She also told their daughter, Michi (Tatyana Richaud), that Dennis was dead. In order to make enough money to buy Michi a piano for Christmas Dennis agree to sell Christmas trees with Rene in New York City. Neither is especially good at the job and it's a big challenge.
For a Christmas movie and a comedy the film is pretty depressing. It's also surprisingly sad considering it stars Paul Giamatti and Paul Rudd. Giamatti does a lot of serious dramas as well as comedies but it's definitely not Rudd's usual thing (it does mark his second quirky indie film this year though, after 'PRINCE AVALANCHE' from a few moths ago). He is his usual dimwitted and easygoing self in it though and you can't help but love him (and root for him) despite his flaws. Giamatti is definitely less likable in the movie and is pretty hard to like but both of their characters have their hearts in the right place. If you're expecting big laughs this isn't the movie for you but it is a decent emotional buddy film.
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