Thursday, November 2, 2017

[Review] The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)

Indie stalwart Noah Baumbach is back again with another nuanced family dramedy. It's called The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected), and the film has made its home on Netflix.

Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller, and Elizabeth Marvel star as siblings who are at very different points in life, but they all have one thing in common -- they're contending for the respect of their (sort of) prestigious artist father (played Dustin Hoffman), while also attempting to escape his shadow.

The script delves into bittersweet family dynamics and explores the interpersonal complexities of strained relationships, and like all Baumbach films -- it's full of chuckle-worthy chunks of dialogue and distinctly-developed characters. Adam Sandler emerges as the stand out -- you heard that right. It's ones of those rare roles where you don't want to smack him in the face. This character feels like a genuine human being, rather than an obnoxious ball of over-the-top schtick.

By design, The Meyerowitz Stories does have more of episodic structure, and it can seem a bit meandering at times. And while the film isn't as thematically pointed as the recent While We're Young, and it doesn't hit the emotional notes or achieve overall charm of Mistress America, Baumbach once again proves that greatly detailed writing and lived-in performances can go a long away.

( 8/10 )

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