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Jeff, Who Lives at Home
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Reviews & Ratings for
Jeff, Who Lives at Home More at IMDbPro »

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17 out of 31 people found the following review useful:

Stop, Look, Listen

Author: David Ferguson (fergusontx@gmail.com) from Dallas, Texas
18 March 2012

Greetings again from the darkness. The Duplass brothers, Jay and Mark, were responsible for a terrific, creepy little comedy called Cyrus. It dealt with a dark, strange relationship between a mother and her grown, stay at home and do nothing son. The Duplass mumblecore beginnings often used familial relationships to find those moments of discomfort and comedy. Their latest movie brings all of that together as they examine multiple relationships within a family, and the possible role of destiny.

Jeff (Jason Segel) is an unemployed, 30 year old, childlike pot-head who lives in his mother's (Susan Sarandon) basement and watches the M Night Shyamalan movie Signs so often that he is convinced there are no "wrong numbers" in life ... everything is a sign leading us to our destiny. After the latest "sign" (phone call for an unknown Kevin), Jeff heads out to complete a simple task for his disenchanted mother. He gets sidetracked on his quest for Kevin, and stumbles into his brother Pat (Ed Helms).

By this time, we have seen Pat interact over breakfast with his wife Linda (Judy Greer). Note to guys: serving breakfast to your wife will not neutralize your surprise purchase of a Porsche. These two people have clearly lost whatever bond they once shared. One thing leads to another and we are soon watching Jeff and Pat stalk Linda and her male lunch friend ... or is he more? While this amateur detective work is playing out, Sharon (their mother) discovers she has a secret admirer at work. Her spirits are immediately lifted as she has pretty much given up on a personal life since the death of her husband years ago. Her friend Carol (Rae Dawn Chong) helps her be receptive to the idea, and this story line provides a nice Duplass twist.

Despite the fact that none of the characters are extremely likable: Jeff is borderline goofy, Pat is kind of an ass, Sharon just seems frustrated ... the story moves along so that each of them grows a bit and their relationships evolve. The ending is a perfect cap and provides meaning, though initially quite a shock to the system after first three-quarters.

The Duplass directing style utilizes micro-bursts of quick zoom in many scenes, giving this a quasi home-movie feel at times. As for the acting, I can't imagine another actor than Jason Segel could have pulled off the role of Jeff. In lesser hands, he would have come off as mentally unstable or just a total loser. Segel's sweetness pays off. It's always great to see Rae Dawn Chong back on screen, and I didn't even hate Susan Sarandon! Judy Greer's scene in the hotel room is so well played, it's a reminder of what a terrific and under-utilized actress she is. Don't expect a laugh outloud comedy, as this is more drama than comedy, though the smiles and chuckles occur in the moment.

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33 out of 63 people found the following review useful:

30-Something Slacker Propaganda

4/10
Author: Nullness from ri
18 May 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Jeff, Who Lives at Home, is 30-something slacker propaganda disguised as a mopey indie flick. After first being introduced as a comical, delusional loaf (lazy oaf), we, the audience, spend the rest of a movie full of pat coincidences being programmed into believing Jeff is (somehow) right after all. About what, I don't know: apparently, the moral of the story is that we, of the slacker trade, must wait to hear our calling from the Universe, and when our calling comes we must be quick to the rescue. And our calling must be as dramatic and heroic as saving a family from a sinking car, after which we can return to our dull, infantile existence for the rest of our meaningless lives.

Jeff is an exaggeration; his brother is a cartoon. This is the sort of movie that because it is indie doesn't whore itself off to product placement but instead uses familiar products to give it the semblance of real life, which is in my mind equally as patronizing, especially when I am supposed to believe movie moguls Jason Segal or Susan Sarandon have any channel whatsoever to what is real life.

In a way, I felt like Susan Sarandon's character while watching this movie: superfluous, and easily manipulated by an exploiting presence to feel the heady pleasures of superficial, short-lived enjoyment, which like this movie lasted only 70 or so minutes, before reality set in and I realized what I watched was a perfectly contrived machine for making me feel this way... and absolutely nothing more.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

OK, but could have been more

6/10
Author: Weed Jesus from Sweden
27 October 2013

A film with a lot of potential. A quite interesting plot (even though it's sometimes a bit too obvious) and great acting from three great and likable actors! Especially Susan Sarandon does a great job and her character feels really real. Unfortunately, everything else in the movie is rather poorly executed...

The light is bad, the soundtrack sounds like an annoying phone signal and the constant work with the zoom every time someone reacts is not artistic in anyway, it's just plain irritating and kind of reduces the acting.

I would also have wanted it to be more humor in the movie. Jason Segel and Ed Helms are funny guys, but the script does not give them a chance to really show it. Jeffs obsession with signs is a funny idea (the intro is hilarious) and they should have made more humor of it.

However, the ending is quite nice and it saves the movie. And the last Kevin-thing is satisfying even though it's obvious and on the verge of cheesy.

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18 out of 34 people found the following review useful:

Forgettable

4/10
Author: Tom Gooderson-A'Court (tgooderson@hotmail.co.uk) from United Kingdom
15 May 2012

Jeff (Jason Segel) is a thirty year old man with a puncheon for the film Signs and lives in his mother Sharon's (Susan Sarandon) basement. His older brother Pat (Ed Helms) still lives close by with his wife Linda (Judy Greer). He and Linda are in the midst of serious marital problems. One day while she is at work, Sharon asks Jeff to go to the shop to pick up some wood glue. Convinced that the name Kevin is some sort of sign he ill advisedly follows various Kevins' around the city bumping into his brother along the way.

To me the film was like a cross between a Wes Anderson film and The Office. It has the odd, quirky indie charm of an Anderson picture but the awkward humour and filming style of The Office. Unfortunately it was neither as good as any Wes Anderson film I've seen nor The Office. At times it was quite funny but these moments were usually fleeting and there weren't many of them. The story was reasonably interesting and the film had a sweet ending but it just didn't mesh together. The whole 'the Universe will show me the way' nonsense was really annoying and although the ending was very sweet, it was obvious and annoyed me.

The film is reminiscent of the Duplass brother's last film Cyrus, which I really liked. You get the feeling that both films inhabit the same world. That film was quirky, funny and sad and these are all things which this film sets out to be. In the end it slightly misses the target on each occasion. The acting is really great but the characters were pretty forgettable. I'll still keep an eye out for the director's future work but this film didn't move me in the way it was meant to. Also, we all live at home! www.attheback.blogspot.com

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Shooting for the target, missing it

3/10
Author: abbywts from United States
12 June 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I know what this movie is supposed to be shooting for, but it misses its mark badly. It's trying to go for quiet, quirky comedy/drama that contains meaningful message. But instead of quiet-it's lethargic. Instead of quirky-it's unfocused. Instead of meaningful, it's saccharin. The concept is silly, which is fine if you can pull it off, here it's not. A 30 year old loser with no prospects sits in his mom's basement smoking pot and obsessed with the movie 'Signs'. His obsession winds up affecting the lives of people around him whose lives are superficially OK, but just as messed up. The part where Susan Sarandon's character starts imaging the sprinklers as a waterfall was where the fake schmaltz level went through the roof. The dramatic rescue scene was the only saving grace in the entire movie.

I'm open to these kinds of movies done well, done badly it's just a painful waste of time. Time better spent smoking pot in the basement. If you want to see a movie that's along similar themes that's far more entertaining, go see 'Our Idiot Brother'.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

"Man, something really big is happening here."

7/10
Author: classicsoncall from United States
27 April 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I'd venture to bet that most people go through a period of angst trying to decipher the meaning of life in their own way. I went through mine during my early twenties, about a decade before Jeff (Jason Segal) did. At some point however you figure out that you better get on the stick or you'll find yourself with no cash and even fewer prospects. So I can relate.

I'm reading some of the reviews for the film and starting to feel sorry for some of the folks who didn't see the humor here. There were some genuine laugh out loud moments in the first half before Jeff's mission started to materialize. However for this flick to work, forget about the randomness of the universe. There are probably more contrived and coincidental things happening during the course of the story to move it along than I've ever seen in a picture before. And of course, if it weren't for Jeff's laid back and easy going attitude, he would never have stuck it out with brother Pat's (Ed Helms) classic me-first attitude.

What one is left with when it's all over, is a nagging feeling that all isn't right with the world after all. Pat's marriage is saved, mom Sharon's (Susan Sarandon) got a new perspective on relationships, and Jeff has found salvation after running into his third Kevin. However the demolished Porsche is in impound, and I'd bet that Jeff follows things up with a big fat doobie. Not exactly the feel good ending you get teased with at the final curtain. On top of that, I'd also be willing to bet that Jeff still lives at home.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Maybe there's something I just missed.

5/10
Author: Ryan_MYeah
10 August 2012

Maybe there was something I missed, but I surprisingly didn't like this. Early on, the movie seems to compare itself to Signs, in how it meanders before finally making sense in the end. "Everything happens for a reason" as we know it. But whereas Signs had Shymalan's signature suspense and mystery to back itself up, Jeff just seems to merely meander. Maybe there's just something more to it, but the idiosyncratic style and uneven shifts between comedic and dramatic tones muddle down whatever the movie wants to say.

I'm a huge Jason Segel fan, and I love Ed Helms as much as the next guy, and they are the best parts of this movie, especially when the two of them share moments of intimate conversation with one another. However, these moments, poignant though they may be, don't provide much help. Susan Sarandon is also trying her best, even if her alternate story feels like something out of a completely different movie. Even Judy Greer, whom I revere and adore, couldn't save this movie for me. Granted, I'm not discouraging anyone from seeing it, it's just that it didn't stick with ME.

**1/2 / *****

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

The search for meaning in this chaotic world

Author: MoviesAboutLife from United States
4 July 2012

Jeff (played by Jason Segel from How I Met Your Mother) is the perfect idealist who is searching for meaning in the world after the death of his father. Everything is a sign from the universe, no matter how trivial it seems to his brother Pat (played by Ed Helms from The Office). The brothers have a strained relationship, as Pat mocks Jeff's every thought. They have an even touchier relationship with their mother Sharon (played by Susan Sarandon), who receives messages from an anonymous admirer at her workplace.

The film is driven by Jeff and Pat's pursuit of Pat's wife Linda (played by Judy Greer from What Women Want), as they suspect she is cheating on him. Throughout the course of the most adventurous day that you can imagine, Jeff, Pat, Linda, and Sharon undergo transformations that fundamentally change their relationships with each other and allow them to find meaning in this chaotic world.

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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

tricked into watching it, thinking it was a comedy

1/10
Author: stonerwood from Stonerwood Movie Reviews
22 September 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Why, oh why have they described it as a comedy? It has nothing to do with a comedy, it is a damn melodrama, as funny and exciting as going to the funeral. This movie has so many flaws it is horrifying to watch. To begin with, I was extremely disappointed with Jason Segal acting – I swear if it was Nicholas Cage instead of him, I wouldn't see any difference – his stone-dead facial expression was really disturbing. Then comes the directors' share in the disaster – what is the meaning of all those lengthy scenes – the road rolling under the car's wheels or a nirvana moment under a fire sprinkle?? The action is already painfully slow, why would you slow it any further? And the soundtrack was the last blow to this piece of "art" – sort of disturbing, profoundly sad chill-out music that gives you shivers.

Looking for good stoner movies? Check it out - stonerwood.blogspot.com

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7 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

Boring, forgettable, unrealistic.

2/10
Author: Hairy Buddah (HairyBuddah@gmail.com) from Seattle, WA
13 August 2012

The acting wobbled as much as the camera-work from boring and flat to jittery and overly stylized. None of the characters were particularly interesting nor were their lives. This movie doesn't really make it as a slice-of-life movie because the character's reactions to each other and the situations in which they found themselves were simply not believable. They were however all too often predictable and traditional TV/movie bits. The ending was too pat and gave a dutiful nod to the Hollywood/new age concept that we are all connected in a mystical spiritual world full of signs and portents. The movie was trying so hard to look meaningful it forgot to actually have any meaning. Only worth watching for the snob appeal of being able to say you watched it. Possibly a good date movie for a guy who is trying to impress an artsy girl who takes herself too seriously.

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