Thursday, January 30, 2014

2013 Award Circuit: Enough Said

2013 Award Circuit

Enough Said Review
The 2013 Awards Circuit will be a collection of  reviews for films that are in some kind of award running within the months of January through March. Not only will this prepare me for the big night (AKA Oscar Night), but it will also allow me to catch up with some of the critically acclaimed films I missed in 2013. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoy watching and writing them.

WARNING: THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS, IF YOU HAVE NOT SEEN "ENOUGH SAID" AND WOULD LIKE TO REMAIN SPOILER-FREE, PLEASE DO NOT READ THIS REVIEW UNTIL AFTER YOU HAVE SEEN THE FILM.

When James Gandolfini died, it was a big deal to me. He wasn't just Tony Soprano, even though that was obviously the role he's famous for. In my mind, it was always the scene with Patricia Arquette in "True Romance." In that quick scene, he became more of a character and presence then most actors in all their movies. It showed how electrifying Gandolfini could really be and its a shame he wasn't a bigger name than he was.

I wanted to see "Enough Said" to see his final moments onscreen. I am happy to report that he gives another genuine, realistic performance. Gandolfini plays Albert a divorced man who meets Eva (Julia Lewis-Dreyfus) a divorced woman. The film focuses on Eva, she is a massage therapist who is thinking about dating again. Meeting Albert at this party, he is instantly attracted to Eva. The connection they make is written all over their faces. One date turns into two dates, then turns into a serious relationship. Around the same time Eva attends the party, she begins to become good friends with one her clients, who also happened to get out of a seemingly bad marriage. Eva soon learns the real meaning behind living in a small world.

Its tough to talk about what works and what doesn't work about "Enough Said" without getting into some spoiler territory. Ya'see, Marianne (Catherine Keener), the client Eva soon becomes best friends with, is Albert's ex-wife. Eva kind of thinks she figures this out but never tells Albert or Marianne, which creates lots of drama when the trio gets together unexpectedly. Sadly, the revelation at the end lands with a uninspiring, unexciting dud. 

The film would have been much better if they had made the film a little more exciting. "Enough Said" is another slice-of-life movie. Basically, we see several moments from Eva's life, then it the movie is over. There is some sort of resolution, but not much of one. I feel the idea of being best friends with one half of a torn marriage and dating the other half and not knowing it could lead to some riveting drama and big jokes. For some reason, "Enough Said" decided not to pursue any of that. Instead, we see Albert and Eva go on several dates, as well as an overdrawn sub-plot revolving around Eva and her relationship with her daughter. Its sad that I don't care because the story is written to be so unbelievably boring.

I guess what kept me watching was the great performances by Gandolfini, Dreyfus, and Keener. They make us believe in the story, they make the unneeded sub-plots somewhat interesting and they keep the film moving along. Toni Collette shows up as another friend of Eva's and her brief work in this film is spot-on. Everybody is does good work, so it pads down the films flaws. Those flaws are still relevant though, and this could have been a wonderful, little treasure.

FINAL GRADE: B-

No comments:

Post a Comment