Enough SaidLondon Film Festival 2013
Saturday 12th October, 6pm – Odeon West End, Screen 2
Sunday 13th October, 3pm – Vue West End, Screen 5
Monday 14th October, 6.30pm – Ritzy Cinema
With some of the sharpest dialogue and strongest performances to be seen this side of the Oscars, Enough Said is a deceptively well-observed situation comedy: a floral juggernaut that disguises issues of self-image, angst, loneliness and marital disharmony as hilarious whimsy.
Eva (Julia Louis-Dreyfus), a middle-aged masseuse with a wicked-quick tongue, meets Albert (James Gandolfini), a squidgy bulldog of a man with a disarming sense of humour. All seems hunky-dory until Eva discovers that a new friend (Catherine Keener as Marianne) – who constantly moans about her ex – is none other than Albert’s disgruntled ex-wife, who proceeds to poison the well of Eva and Albert’s relationship with bitter reminiscences of the middle-class problems in her former marriage with Albert.
Writer/director Nicole Holofcener’s superlative script is unmistakeably middle class. Eva goes out with her married friends just so they have someone to talk to; quips are made about veal, poetry, chervil and trip advisor; visual gags abound whenever Eva lugs her enormous massage table around.
This is refreshing humour, far from genteel but a world away from the dude-centric gross-out comedies popular of late. There is something more sophisticated to Enough Said, less brash, more feminine – which is not to say feminist. Holofcener and the late James Gandolfini clashed during filming: the actor, more used to playing New Jersey hard-man Tony Soprano, expressed his concerns over the extent to which Albert was whipped. But in reality the opposite is true. Eva’s world may be populated and run almost exclusively by women, but from the moment Albert waddles into it she is obsessed by his quiet confidence – even when she thinks the worst about him she can think of little else.
For all the plaudits that should be sent Holofcener’s way for writing and direction, it’s the performances that really set Enough Said apart. Toni Collette and an imperious Ben Falcone repeatedly steal the show as Eva’s dysfunctional married friends, Keener is delicately understated as snobby, bohemian poet Marianne, and Gandolfini plays spectacularly against type as Albert, painfully aware of his own faults. But the undeniable star in the galaxy is the outrageously funny Dreyfus.
Enough Said is the filmic equivalent of a friend who is kind, generous, witty, talented, forgiving, brutally funny, rude when appropriate, and sexy without knowing it. You want to hate them for their talent, but you just can’t because they’re so ruddy fantastic.
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