Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Away We Go |
Actors: John Krasinski, Maya Rudolph, Jeff Daniels, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Allison Janney
Director: Sam Mendes
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama
John Krasinski (The Office) and Maya Rudolph (Saturday Night Live) star in the heartfelt film that explores the comedic twists and turns in one couple?s journey across contemporary America. Anticipating the birth of thei... more »
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Fabulous! - Easily one of the best films so far in 2009
Robert Moore | Chicago, IL USA | 06/13/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Like all road pictures, AWAY WE GO is about a couple in their early thirties trying to discover themselves (and what kind of home and family they want to create for themselves) through a round of visits in the sixth month of the pregnancy. I've never been a huge fan of Dave Eggers, but the script that he wrote with Vendela Vida is a brilliant one. The structure of the film is simple: Burt (THE OFFICE's Jim Krasinski) and Verona (SNL's Maya Rudolph) have moved to a small, cold house entirely so that they can live near Burt's parents. But after learning that they will be moving to Antwerp a month before their baby is due, they realize that they don't need to live any longer in a town where they have no friends and, now, no relatives. They plan a long trip that will see them visiting friends and relatives in a number of locations, including Scottsdale, Tucson, Montreal, and Miami. They see people whose lives they would like to emulate and those they would not.
And along the way hilarity ensues. The scenes between Burt and Verona are frequently hysterical, though when they are meeting their friends or relatives they tend to become "straight men" and the humor shifts over to the others. Although several people are absolutely outstanding, two actors deserve special mention. First, Allison Janney is absolutely hysterical as Verona's former boss in Chicago (more about Chicago in a second). She is, putting it simply, a nightmare of a mother. But in the most hysterical of ways. (Now on Chicago. Verona mentions working in Chicago and she is shown to be a medical illustrator. This is not unconnected with Chicago; in fact, there is a direct correlation between medical illustration and Chicago, since the most important medical illustration program is at the University of Illinois at Chicago Medical School. Odds are that if someone has studied medical illustration, they did it there.) The second actor who stands out is Maggie Gyllenhaal, who plays a college professor and old friend of Burt who and the embracer of more fringe and nutzoid ideas than one can imagine. Her ideas, and those of her husband, are so absurd that given gentle, placid Burt can take no more.
But the major kudos have to go to Krasinski and Rudolph, who manage to create two characters we come to like a great deal and who we very much hope will come to understand precisely what they and where they want to have it. This is an especially enjoyable film given the overwhelming amount of special effects fare at this time of the year. This is an intelligent film that also manages to be very, very funny. It is currently in somewhat limited release, but when you get a chance to see it, do so."
Sam Mendes-lite but still Sam Mendes-good.
David J. Brown | 07/13/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"At the butt-end of last year Sam Mendes directed a film called Revolutionary Road. This was a masterpiece, truly deserving of that title. It's his best film hands down! His previous films American Beauty and Road To Perdition weren't too shabby either. They all have a sense of darkness and foreboading. The dark foreboading element is missing from his current film Away We Go, and that is not a bad thing.
The basic set-up is simple and understandable in that movie universe sort of way, but two winning performances from leads Mya Rudolph and Chris Krisinski really help this thing over some of the comedy set-up trappings. Rudolph is an actress that I've known from SNL and that's it, I've not seen here in anything else. Surprisingly, she ends up playing straight-man to Krisinski. And you she gives a very touching and honest performance, and I see a great career outside anything resembling comedy in her future. Krisinski is an actor I've never seen in anything. I've been informed that he is one of the stars of the American version of The Office, and he, like Rudolph, is someone I want to see more of. He plays affable in this film like a pro. He's an optimist and a realist all in one heartwarming stroke. He's the goofier of the couple but it comes off more like it's part of his character and his personality and less like comedy schtick. Together I would watch any film premise about this pairing.
This is a real couple, not a made up movie couple. This is my favorite part of this film. The plot is cute and similar to that of the great film Flirting With Disaster, but the unmarried leads make this film above average. They don't have silly, pointless and melodramatic arguments to up the conflict factor most these type of films contrive for the sheer 'entertainment' value. Sorry, folks, this is about real people not the cyphers that make up the world of most sitcoms and Rom-Coms.
The first and one of the best examples I can conjur up in regard to this point is an early scene of the couple driving to Krisinski's parents' house(played hysterically but briefly by Jeff Daneiels and Catherine O'Hara). Krisinski, who sells insurance by phone, gets a call from a client and puts on an obnoxious 'offcial business' voice that irritates Rudolph. She pulls over the car and gently steps out. He catches up to her and they flirt. There's no silly argument of the two complaining about themselves. They know each other so well and truly love each other to the point that they know each others' faults, quirks and everything in between. This is what it is like to truly know, understand and love each other. Little touches like this really make this film rise abvove the rest.
This is a road movie so we meet various other side characters that help emphasise and illustrate versions of family life and modern couplings. We get some great cameo by Maggie Gyllenhal as a very liber4al new-agey type who supplies some o the film's funniest situational comedy. Most of the humor comes from an honest place and not joke set-ups. Not all of the humor, but most. The constant change in locale is a comedy contrivance in itself but we forgive it because the characters are so engaging and real.
The film is not without its flaws. The premise is a bit obvious and basically negligiable. The final emotional conclusions are obvious long before they arrive, but they are executed and performed so flawlessly it's easy to forgive this flaw.
I'm happy to see Mendes broaden inot this territory. It's not as dark, and it's not about miserable people, but rather real people. They are self-proclaimed "F@#$CK ups". It's a story of late bloomers. They're just making it and fitting the pieces together a little slower then the rest of us. No big career destinations, no big dreams, they're just living their lives and loving each other honestly. It's quite lovely. Starting their unexpected family is as natural to them as never becoming a wedded couple. This is life, but rather contrived in a more entertaining movie way.
Reminiscent of Garden State, and thats good!
Holly K. Lee | Chicago, IL | 10/12/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie was a charming look at a couple that is struggling to define themselves and to find their place in the world. The comedy was perfectly placed and well written. The story lines were honest and believable glimpses into various peoples very different lives. The main couple visits friends and family around North America trying to find where they would fit. What they find out is that they don't really fit any of those places and they have to make their own way in the world. Excellent movie, one of the best of 2009."
Away We Go
Deborah Oliver | oklahoma city | 11/01/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I truly enjoyed this film. I thought it had a really good message. It only had one problem. The language. I don't usually care about such things, but a friend was over to watch it with me and she was offended. Truly the language was not necessary to the movie and I think this is a shame. I know she should loosen up maybe, but using language for shock value is unnecessary.
However, over all I liked the picture."