Director: Judd Apatow
Writers: Judd Apatow, Judd Apatow (characters)
Stars: Paul Rudd, Leslie Mann and Maude Apatow
Runtime: 134 mins
Leslie Mann and Paul Rudd (reprising the characters they created in “Knocked Up”) turn 40 and deal with complications in their marriage, family and careers. There’s not much of a plot line, just situations where they interact with each other and friends. In typical Judd Apatow style, the dialogue often feels improvised, but that doesn’t stop it from being very funny. The supporting cast is loaded with strong comic turns, esp. Albert Brooks & Melissa McCarthy. This movie is full insights into life and relationships that elicit chuckles of recognition and lots of laughs.
GAY ANGLE: What’s the difference between a straight man’s and a gay man’s mustache? See the film for the hilarious punch line (and the film’s only real gay mention).
Hyde Park on Hudson
Director: Roger Michell
Writer: Richard Nelson
Stars: Bill Murray, Laura Linney and Olivia Williams
Runtime: 94 mins
The title refers to Franklin Roosevelt’s personal home, where he sought solitude and escape from his Presidential duties. It’s here that the first English king ever to step foot in the US comes to visit and ask for support against Hitler. This makes for entertaining social/political moments, thanks largely to the delightful performances by Samuel West and Olivia Colman as the monarchs. However, the story is told through the eyes of one of the President’s “companions” (Laura Linney), so it takes on a decidedly emotional essence. Bill Murray does a fine job as Roosevelt and the other performances are uniformly engaging. The setting, art direction and cinematography are attractive, but this the surprise/disappointment is that the majority of the focus is on the woman’s personal journey. This softens the whole thing and make is more of a prestige chick flick.
GAY ANGLE: Eleanor Roosevelt’s fondness for women is accepted in matter-of-fact, yet hushed tones.