RELEASE DATE: 14/11/2013
RUN TIME: 1HR 33MIN
When divorced single-mother Eva (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) attends a party with her best friends Sarah (Toni Collette) and Will (Ben Falcone), she meets Albert (James Gandolfini), a like-minded man who too is dreading his daughter’s impending voyage to college, and Marianne (Catherine Keener), a poet Eva take on as a new massage client. Eva and Albert soon become friends and lovers, while Eva and Marianne’s friendship also blossoms - both relationships enjoying the benefits of being able to share their divorce woes and, well, bitching about their exes. It eventually becomes apparent that Albert and Marianne are, in fact, each others' exes, and Eva struggles as each relationship infects the other.
Deeply smart, sharp, insightful, big-hearted and mature, Julia is a revelation - to the point you wonder why it’s taken this long to see her shine on the big screen. James Gandolfini, sadly in his penultimate role, is wonderfully cute and endearing as the almost noble Albert. The key to the film's success is authenticity - the high concept is down-played with understated performances that make each layered relationship beautifully ring true.
Yes, they telegraph the twist and the two secondary story lines are annoyingly left unresolved, but the rest is just so darn good, funny and enjoyable you don’t care. While not likely to stick with you like many other romantic comedies, it’s still 93 minutes of pure enjoyment.