“I don’t usually park in front of your house. I usually just drive by,” said Eva.
Enough Said is a gem in shape of a beautifully crafted midlife divorce dating drama (that I rarely see lately) from writer/director, Nicole Holofcener, who’s adept with feminine adult romance. The movie stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus, as a masseuse single mother, Eva, who lives with a teenage daughter—who will soon leave to college.
While some other grown-up dramas find it too hard not to reenact the characters’ coming-of-age love, Enough Said stays strict to its divorce dating premise along with some midlife crises. Younger audiences, like me, might feel alienated from the movie’s main cause or find it difficult to get attached to the conflict; yet, Holofcener works this thing out by crafting a more sympathetic story that entices wide range of audiences, including the younger ones.
What makes this piece sweet is: how the story involves a fragile figure of James Gandolfini (who lead The Sopranos)—before his decease last year—as Albert, a single father with a daughter; bruised and uneasy, to balance the palette from being too feminine. Eva meets Albert in a party she attends with her married friends (Toni Collette and Ben Falcone); the same party where she meets Marianne (Nicole Holofcener)—who soon becomes her partially close friend-client. Immediately, Eva and Albert start to go on some dates and get attracted to each other, only to discover a bittersweet truth that you might have predicted, but, is presented in a smart way.
Some details in the narrative is, seemingly, too complicated to be some coincidences; whether, Holofcener intentionally leaves it there to provoke some biased discussion is not important; the most important thing is, how the story is crafted to be sustainable to bear such “coincidence”—archenemy of drama narrative. Yet, Louis-Dreyfus’ rare charming performance as a main focus is sympathetic; she delivers strong points of comedy and drama in her acting, adding some layers inside Eva’s personality in accepting midlife crisis as a single mother. Likewise, the late Gandolfini gave his best shot in one of, perhaps, most distinct persona; as a single father, bruised by the divorce, he just contorts his Sopranos persona.
Enough Said might be something we can’t imagine before, if we’re too young to watch this. Some elements might be alienating us from personally get attached to the narrative, but, the movie just goes sympathetically, leaving us wondering with open feeling. It’s different, yet, it has bittersweet wit and wry laugh like we expect.
Enough Said (2013)
Drama, Romance Written & Directed by: Nicole Holofcener Starred by: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, James Gandolfini, Catherine Keener, Toni Collette Running Time: 93 mins Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, comic violence, language and partial nudity