Aside from Annabelle and Dracula Untold, I haven't actually seen a film in cinemas this month that I did not enjoy, and that's rare. Although I did skip Tammy. This is Where I Leave You follows the story of Judd Altman (Jason Bateman), a happy man living a happy life with his wife. That is until he gets home from work early one afternoon to find his wife, Quinn (Abigail Spencer), sleeping with his boss, Wade (Dax Shepard). On top of that, Judd is also notified by his sister, Wendy (Tina Fey) that their father has died. Now Judd must travel back to his home town to hang out with his estranged family and mourn their loss.
This Is Where I Leave You is Shawn Levy's best film to date. Shawn Levy, the film's director, has two films being released this year. This, of course, and Night At The Museum 3: Secret of the Tomb in December, which I'll be watching just because of Robin Williams. It won't surprise me if I enjoy this one more, especially since the other one is what it is. Anyway, other than these two films, Levy's filmography is fairly mixed. He's got films such as The Internship, which admittedly I enjoy, The Pink Panther and Real Steel, which I also like. So when I say that this is his best film, and certainly his best directing effort, that's not saying too much.
The film doesn't add anything new to the table, but it's still the type of movie that really appeals to me. I honestly don't know what it is about these movies, but I enjoy most of them. They're all fairly similar: dialogue that's deliberately wise, families bonding, romance predictably ensuring, but I keep watching them and I keep enjoying them, This Is Where I Leave You most definitely included.
It's just a very funny movie! That's the only way to put it. It's full of charm, heart and humour, all done in an excellent and enjoyable way. These characters are like magnets, they're made from the same thing, but they just repel off of one another. You know the outcome, but the journey there is what we're here to see and said journey is damn fun. The dialogue is so full of banter, reminiscing and love that you'll leave the theatre feeling as if you're a part of their family, which I suppose is the highest praise I can give this movie.
The performances are all good, with the exception of Kathryn Hahn. I said it in my review of Bad Words too, but I just can't really stand Kathryn Hahn in anything. Her performances are always over the top and unfunny. I didn't actually know she was going to be in this movie and when I saw her on screen I was utterly bamboozled. Her character is the same character as in every other movie of hers, and it's a character that I just don't want to see anymore. Aside from her, the rest of the cast do a great job, especially Jason Bateman who I, unlike Kathryn Hahn, enjoy in most of his movies.
To sum up, This Is Where I Leave You is a fairly conventional and predictable movie with yet another annoying performance from Kathryn Hahn, but if you look past that then the film is just very funny, enjoyable, well acted and directed.
3 1/2 Stars