Thomas Webb, the son of a publisher and his artistic wife, has just graduated from college and is trying to find his place in the world. Moving from his parents' Upper West Side apartment to the Lower East Side, he befriends his neighbor W.F., a shambling alcoholic writer who dispenses worldly wisdom alongside healthy shots of whiskey. Thomas' world begins to shift when he discovers that his long-married father is having an affair with a seductive younger woman. Determined to break up the relationship, Thomas ends up sleeping with his father's mistress, launching a chainin of events that will change everything he thinks he knows about himself and his family. Wow!Written by
The letter sent to Thomas by the Penguin Group at the end of the film has a typo in it: where it reads 'I with you every success with your book...' should actually be 'I wish you every success with your book'? Didn't expect that from the 'Penguin Group'. See more »
A Love Letter to Being a Twenty-Something Artist in New York City
This is a unique little movie and has very limited appeal...of which I am part of the limit...hence the 8 out of 10. Its content is similar to both The Squid and the Whale (although not as richly realized) as well as The Mysteries of Pittsburgh (but less self-conscious). Without relying on period pop music, it manages to capture a very specific moment in New York City...back when living in the lower east side was considered radical and right before the Internet and mobile and 9/11 changed everything. At least that is the way it felt. There is more contemporary technology evident...but it felt added on. The story follows a handful of characters, none of whom are particularly sympathetic and all of whom occupy rarefied terrain, either via their education, career, creativity, or family name. Callum Turner-in the lead- had the most clearly drawn role and made the character endearing and not arrogant. He is interesting physically, too...at times looking like Keith Gordon, at others like Richard Gere. Other pluses: its running time is under 90 minutes and it uses some exceptional New York City locations (such as the Brooklyn Museum and the Oyster Bar). Finally, this is really a movie about fathers and sons (and mentors)-a very under-mined topic in film.
The not so good news? The aforementioned time stamp issues...when does this film take place? There are clues but they do not add up under scrutiny. Or is it supposed to take place within the "idea" of a different era? I don't know but they should have gone full late 80s/early 90s period piece. More importantly, the characters are too broadly drawn...and the actors work with what they have. Brosnan, Nixon, Bridges, Clemons, and Beckinsale all do their best with the material they have, rarely share scenes together, and all seem to be unclear as to whether they are in a comedy or a drama. Meanwhile, it occupies some space in between comedy and drama... It's a small movie that has some very big cinematic moments, largely due to the exquisite cinematography by Stuart Dryburgh: a Londoner who clearly loves New York City.
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