This Is Where I Leave You

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Shawn Levy directs a heartwarming comedy about dysfunctional family members who have to live together for a week after their father passes away in the film, This Is Where I Leave You. Judd Altman (Jason Bateman) is a radio producer who brings home a birthday cake for his wife Quinn (Abigail Spencer) only to find her in bed with his sleazy boss Wade (Dax Shepard). (I hate it when that happens.) As if things couldn’t get any worse, his father dies and his mother, Hillary Altman (Jane Fonda) asks him and all of his siblings to come home for ‘Shiva’ the seven Jewish days of mourning. (Did I mention his father was an atheist and his mom isn’t Jewish?) Not only does his sister Wendy (Tina Fey) and his brothers Phillip (Adam Driver) and Paul (Corey Stoll) show up, but so do their spouses, their girlfriends and boy friends, their children, and even exes. Because Hillary is a child psychologist who wrote a book comprised of true stories about her kids which immediately leads to frustration, arguments, and physical fights. Within the first couple days there is so much tension in the house Judd leaves and meets up with his high school sweetheart, Penny Moore (Rose Byrne) for a little solace until a misunderstanding breaks them up. (As if we didn’t know this would happen.) In those seven days, there are break-ups, make-ups, emotional heart-to-hearts, and even some interesting surprises. This film would be best described as a mela-comedy or in my case an movie about an obnoxious family. (I was stressed out within the first 15 minutes and I couldn’t even see the annoying family dynamics.) It had its funny moments but everything seemed to be built around sexual references. I did love all of the colorful characters and of course the acting was fantastic. I know it would have been better with a witty script, better editing, and familiar sound track. (Was there even any music?) This is also the first time Shawn Levy directed a movie that had an R rating. This film just didn’t feel like a comedy and I’m giving it a C+ rating.

This movie has been given an R rating by the MPAA