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The problem with the Duplass brothers' 2012 movie can be summed up in
one word: boring. It is just so unapologetically boring. Combine that
with the fact that I just didn't care about any of the characters, and
this movie doesn't come close to being as enjoyable as their movie
CYRUS. That film was quirky and fun; this one tries to be, but falls
way short. I can't blame it on the cast because I can see they tried. I
just couldn't force myself to care about the story; it just wanders on
and expects us to believe in coincidence so much that we don't care
that the whole movie is just these two characters bumbling their way
from set piece to set piece. The Jeff from the movie's title is played
by Jason Segal, a thirty-year-old stoner who continues to live in his
mother's basement watching the movie SIGNS over and over again. He is a
firm believer that M. Night Shyamalan was on to something and that
everything happens for a reason. In fact, he believes it so strongly
that he can't even make basic decisions without some random event
influencing his decision. His brother Pat (Ed Helms) is in a
deteriorating marriage and his mother Sharon (Susan Sarandon) suffers a
menial office job while pressing her stoned-out son to find the
motivation to move on with his life. A wrong number phone call spurs
Jeff into action, sending him on a journey to find the supposed
I guess the characters in the movie were somewhat relatable. They just weren't very likable. Jeff is an idiot. I know we're supposed to be charmed by his naivety and never-ending faith in the universe's ability to lead him in the right direction, but he came off to me as just a grown man-child who's smoked a little too much and can't take responsibility for his own life. Pat is a selfish wannabe hotshot, awkward with his employees and neglectful of his own wife. And then there's Sharon, Jeff's disillusion mother and her soul-crushing job. I understand how she can be so disappointed in her son and I expect that we'll see him change her mind in one way or another over the course of the movie, but I don't understand why she needed her own entire subplot about how disappointed she is with her life and how an anonymous office admirer is spicing it up. I was having a hard enough time caring about anything going on in the Jeff/Pat plot without constantly cutting away to see Sharon flirting via instant message in an unrelated love story. Honestly though, the lamest aspect of the whole film is the concept as a whole: a stoner obsessed with a flawed Shyamalan movie wanders from place to place, miraculously finding himself at the right place at the right time. It's all about Kevin. Got to find Kevin. Wait, now it's time to help Pat save his crumbling marriage.
I'll give the cast credit. They're all very talented people and they're all trying to do something here. I guess they saw how well CYRUS came out and they wanted to be a part of a quirky indie film too. Jason Segal is great, and Ed Helms appears genuinely clueless about how he's damaging his marriage. Susan Sarandon does an excellent job, even if her character was more prevalent that she needed to be. Each of them are great actors in their own right, but the material is just lame. The whole thing is just too "quirky". It felt as if they were shooting to make the most stereotypical indie film they could, loaded with kitsch and snap zooms. It was a bizarre combination of forced and meaningless. For whatever reason, the hand-held shaky-cam technique and constant zooms weren't so blatant in CYRUS but JEFF, WHO LIVES AT HOME shoves your face into the non-action. I'm not ready to give up on the Duplass brothers yet. I haven't seen their earlier films but right now they seem hit or miss, and I'm sure they'll have some more quality work in the future. This movie isn't beyond salvage, but it's boring. And for a medium meant to entertain, it can be just as bad.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Maybe it came at the right time, but I thought this short dramedy was
very very worth while. Great character development for such a short
movie taking place over such a short time (one day). Worth a watch.
It's a feed good movie with a happy ending, which, these days, ain't so
And by the way, I've ready several reviews stating "and we never find out the significance of the name Kevin." If you pay attention, you'd find out in the final scene of the movie, while Jeff is watching the news story of his heroic rescue, that the name of the man who's life he saves is, in fact, "Kevin". Guess only those who paid attention "got it". Just like Jeff.
Something strikes within the first few minutes: why the Duplass
brothers have that fancy of using zoom-ins "Office style" ? This
technique is to be used only in a few cases, here we are under the
impression that it is a bad attempt at adding realism to the story, it
is badly used and even distracts the viewer.
Anyway, the movie starts off on the wrong foot with this weird cinematography. As for the script, the story navigates between these three characters without trying to go deeper on anything. There is no clear structure, the message is foggy and in the end, it is hard to understand what the two brothers wanted to tell the audience. Too bad because with a Segel-Helms duo, one could have expected much better.
Really enjoyed this. Not perfect, but almost every scene got me
interested and looking forward.
It's a sentimental romance, but with the excellent acting and dialogue you expect from a US indie film.
The climax was completely improbable, but I likes'd it. And the reveal on the mother's secret admirer worked perfectly.
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It's hard to describe this movie. It's half comedy, half drama. I was
drawn into it from the start, and definitely not quite what I expected.
Jason Segal delivers. Ed Helms is great in it too. Everything about
this movie works. I haven't rated it yet, because I'd rather it soak in
a bit since I just got through watching it.
If you like movies like "Little Miss Sunshine", or "About Schmidt", you'll love this one. Do not let the cast throw you off. I kinda expected something like "Our Idiot Brother" or "Forgetting Sarah Marshall". But I got something else instead. Dare I say that I was enlightened? Anyways, I highly recommend it.
I'm biased guy. Come on, I don't own the truth. When I like something,
it's important to me to check out if I'm alone. That being said I have
to say that I know what I like. And I loved this movie! Once I finished
seeing it, I came here mesmerized, hoping, in a real optimistic way to
find great reviews, big ratings, people that hopefully felt the same
way towards this little gem. And, the, I was let down. No, although
some would find it awesome as I did, many more to my surprise didn't
I confess that I started to think: was it what I saw, not as great as I humbly thought it was? Was I in a different groovy mood today, and that's the reason why I loved it so much? In a deeper sense, did I like it so, cause I lost my father too early? Many things crossed my mind as I started this movie laughing joyfully, and ended it crying and moved in a deep way. If it wasn't so late, my urge was to call all my best friends ant tell them to watch this movie.
I didn't do it, obviously. So I came here, at the end of my day (the next day), to find out what other people thought about it. Remember that I said that I can be biased by other people's argument of what I felt and seen. I confessed it! And the I've found bad reviews questioning zooms (wich I loved, and found very pertinent)I' ve found people questioning themselves for living "at home" and searching for strangers opinions, I went through the boards and found stupid discussions about many things, and for a moment I felt sad... Well, I hoped, but people didn't get it.
I didn't want to feel intellectually special for having loved this film so much. I just wanted to find people that related to this movie the way I did. But... I couldn't.
This movie is about a family. A family that has everything going for them. Until something unexpected, a surprise, a misstep off the script happens, and from then on, everything drifts apart. Well... it happens all the time to many people. And then chaos presents itself. Then it's each for each own.
But if, I say if, destiny or fate, could just for one day, put the pieces together, then everything can turn out fine.
That's a fantasy. That's a fable.
Do I believe in fate, destiny? No. But this movie takes on a journey and invite us to believe so. Or not... But shows us, that as much as it can be f*cked up, our family IS our family.
At least, that's how it stroked me. And I loved it. No matter what :)
When I first stumbled upon Jeff, Who Lives At Home, I wasn't much other than a few laughs and another consistent performance from Jason Segel. I was absolutely blown away by what ensued. Jason Segel plays the title character, Jeff. Jeff is a grown man with little essence of direction in his life and completely blinded by the possibility of destiny. His increasing obsession with the movie "Signs" leads Jeff to believe that his destiny is out there, and as a result he takes every little abnormality as a sign. Segel gives a wonderful performance. Many will relate to Jeff and warm up to his character very early into the movie. His brother, played by Ed Helms has his life together. Or so it would seem. He's married with a stable job and seems to have his life together. I'm not particularly fond of Ed Helms but he gives a very dedicated performance throughout the film as his character's life begins to fall to pieces. The brothers unite in a journey that ultimately leads to Jeff fulfilling his destiny in a beautifully written ending. The ending will grab your heart strings and make you appreciate what life has to offer. Jay Duplass deserves a lot of credit for this absolute gem of a movie producing a magnificent story that really demonstrates the wonderful acting ability of Jason Segel. Topped off with the amazing, Susan Sarandon, playing Jeff's mom, who struggles to find happiness in her life, really puts the icing on the cake. Inspiring film. You'll want to watch it again.
Jeff believes that there are signs everywhere, and you will find them
if only you are aware. He even considers looking for and following the
signs as an essential part of human life. This renders his lifestyle to
be passive, which is indicated in the title: He (still) lives at home.
On the contrary Jeff's brother, Pat is pursuing an active lifestyle,
working as a salesman and believing that man forges his own destiny.
Their mother portrays a third perspective on life. She has surrendered,
given up hope to achieve what her sons are looking for. Three unhappy
characters, struggling to understand their own life and the environment
they are living in.
This movie is about fate, about believe in yourself and the universe, about courage and despair. The great part is that it does not need religion, no moral, no pathos. It is not cheesy at all. Jeff believes that life needs magic, which can be found by following the signs. Pat is also looking for magic, but he finds it in a Porsche. A brilliant moment arrives when Pat and Jeff are trying to find Pat's wife in a motel. Both get there in different ways: Pat with his determination and stubbornness and Jeff by, guess what, following a sign.
The final scenes tell us, in a heartwarming way, that either of the character's conception of life is equally right. When they all meet together, each one has found a way to overcome their unhappiness, THEIR way. A brilliant movie, with a great Jason Segel, and story told without being obtrusive, but quite remarkable.
Most comedic actors, at some point in their careers, play a role which
goes against their usual persona,like Will Ferrell in 'Stranger Than
'Jeff, Who Lives at Home' is such a vehicle for Jason Segel. Known as playing the goofy nice guy, Segel switches gears in this indie comedy-drama.
Segel plays Jeff, a 30-year-old pot-smoking slacker who lives in his mum's basement, is obsessed with the movie 'Signs' and is constantly searching for his destiny. He has a tense relationship with his brother Pat (Ed Helms, also playing against his usual comedic persona), who is seemingly far more successful than him. Unemployed and unmotivated, Jeff seems to be drifting through life, seemingly unable to complete the most basic household chores (like buying glue from the store to fix the broken shutter). While the film, directed by the Duplass brothers, could have turned it into yet another "slacker comedy", with Jeff the butt of the jokes, they show restraint and portray him as a real person with real problems.
One morning, Jeff gets a call from a man looking for someone called Kevin. Believing this to be a sign, he goes out searching for anyone named Kevin. Meanwhile, Pat is dealing with the breakdown of his marriage to Linda (Judy Greer), whom he suspects is having an affair. To top it off, their mother Sharon (Susan Sarandon), a straight-laced woman, is dealing with a secret admirer at work, while confiding with her friend Carol (Rae Dawn Chong) about how directionless her life is.
While, on the surface, 'Jeff ' feels like a depressing film, the overriding message is one of hope: of never giving up on something you value or something you thought had long passed you by. It's also a realistic film: life doesn't always work out the way you want and sometimes you can feel stuck in a rut, but Jeff's almost naive belief in signs and destiny is refreshingly optimistic, especially when even Jeff's own family has written him off as an unmotivated slacker. If you're after something a bit more grounded than the usual "slacker comedy", then this is well worth checking out.
Though I have heard a bit about the Duplass brothers, this is their
first movie I am watching. It is not innovative or nothing that you
have not seen before, but does build a terrific environment carefully
setting up the characters, their positions and relationships.
Occasionally funny, sweet, touching and heartwarming in equal amounts
while still maintaining a quirky look at all the regular things.
Jeff (Jason Segel) is unemployed, looked down upon by his brother Pat (Ed Helms) and mother Sharon (Susan Sarandon) and as the title goes stays at home until the phase of the story started. You wouldn't see him at home during the rest of the movie. Pat is going through a midlife crisis and is shunned by his wife Linda (Judy Greer) for buying a Porche without consulting her. Pat discovers that Linda might be having an affair and brings in Jeff to follow her. Sharon is dragged into a little anxiety about a secret admirer at work. Also Jeff believes in destiny and he is pursuing a snippet he got in the morning. How all these stories collide will form the rest.
It is a role tailor made for Jason Segel and he delivers that held back performance which was perfectly apt. Helms, Sarandon, Greer all perform their roles really well inviting us to their world the Duplass brothers have created. Background score is that offbeat indie style while rest of the departments does a decent job nothing too special for mention since the movie is not too ambitious.
Does well within its limitations considering the minimal ambitions.
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