Georges and Anne are in their eighties. They are cultivated, retired music teachers. Their daughter, who is also a musician, lives abroad with her family. One day, Anne has an attack. The couple's bond of love is severely tested.
Estelle Harris, Jason Alexander and Jerry Stiller were hired to do voice overs for the scenes where Mia Farrow and Christopher Walken sit stone-faced watching an unseen TV sitcom. Todd Solondz felt the "Costanzas" on the TV series "Seinfeld" were a sitcom version of the family he was depicting, but he couldn't afford to use audio clips from "Seinfeld." See more »
"Mozart: Flute Concerto in G Major, K. 313: I. Allegro Maestoso"
Performed by Martin Pearlman & Boston Baroque
Soloist: Jacques Zoon
Courtesy of Telare International
Used by permission of Concord Music Group, Inc. See more »
Todd Solondz obviously doesn't like people. If he did he wouldn't give us characters as thoroughly unlikable as Abe and Miranda, make them the leads in his disquieting, fantasy 'rom-com' "Dark Horse" and then set them up for our ridicule, (the 'comedy' comes from how much we laugh at these characters rather than with them). Abe is fat, unattractive and obnoxious with it and Jordan Gelber plays him superbly. Miranda is a would-be beauty who has let herself go; let herself go to the extent that she is prepared to marry Abe, a man she doesn't even like let alone love. Selma Blair plays her as a one-dimensional loser making her equally difficult to like. Abe lives at home with his parents, (brilliant performances from Christopher Walken and Mia Farrow), and works for his dad, though to be honest he doesn't do much work.
This is typical Solondz; a miserablist, myopic vision of humanity but without the brilliance that distinguished earlier pictures like "Welcome to the Dollhouse" and "Happiness". If I describe this as a 'pathetic' picture I don't mean that it's bad. It's very well written, directed and acted, (Donna Murphy is terrific as the secretary who fuels Abe's fantasies), but it's full of people you would cross town, never mind the street, to avoid and whatever handicaps you might have yourself it makes you glad you're not like anyone up there on the screen.
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