The Rebound (2009)

The Rebound
Director: Bart Freundlich
Writer: Bart Freundlich
Cast: Catherine Zeta-Jones, Justin Bartha, Andrew Cherry, Kelly Gould, Lynn Whitfield, Kate Jennings Grant, Rob Kerkovich, Sam Robards, John Schneider, Joanna Gleason, Art Garfunkel
Seen on: 27.12.2017
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Plot:
Sandy’s (Catherine Zeta-Jones) live fell apart after she discovered that her husband of many years cheated on her. Now she’s living in a new apartment above a coffee shop with her kids and tries to get a fresh start in life. Aram (Justin Bartha) who is a barista in said coffee shop may be much younger than Sandy, but his life is at a low point as well. Having just got out of a relationship that turned out to be a green card scam, he doesn’t really know what he wants to do with his life. When Sandy ends up hiring him as a babysitter, they become closer and even start dating. But are they really just rebounds for each other?

I liked the idea of The Rebound, what with the older woman dating a younger man and it not being portrayed as cougar-like predatory behavior. Or at least that’s what I expected. But The Rebound is so quintessentially male in its perspective, I could barely stand it.

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Dark Horse (2011)

Dark Horse
Director: Todd Solondz
Writer: Todd Solondz
Cast: Jordan Gelber, Selma Blair, Mia Farrow, Christopher Walken, Justin Bartha, Zachary Booth, Aasif Mandvi, Donna Murphy
Part of: Viennale

Plot:
Abe (Jordan Gelber) works for his father Jackie (Christopher Walken), where he does a pretty bad job, actually, since his interest is mostly invested in his toy collection, and gets his butt saved more often than not by co-worker Marie (Donna Murphy). When Abe meets the depressed Miranda (Selma Blair), he asks her out and since she’s basically too lethargic to decline, that’s actually the start of something.

I saw an interview with Todd Solondz where he said that he wanted to test the audience’ limits of sympathy with the character of Abe. Well, I guess I failed that test because I just couldn’t bring myself to care about him – and with my lack of sympathy for him, the movie didn’t work either.

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New York, I Love You (2009)

New York, I Love You is a collection of short films, bundled together because they are all set in New York. The segments were directed by Fatih Akin, Yvan Attal, Allen Hughes, Shunji Iwai, Wen Jiang, Shekhar Kapur, Joshua Marston, Mira Nair, Natalie Portman and Brett Ratner, the transitions between the segments by Randall Balsmeyer. And in the various segments there were Justin Bartha, Rachel Bilson, Orlando Bloom, James Caan, Hayden Christensen, Julie Christie, Bradley Cooper, Shia LaBeouf, Andy Garcia, Ethan Hawke, John Hurt, Cloris Leachman, Blake Lively, Drea de Matteo, Natalie Portman, Maggie Q, Christina Ricci, Eli Wallach, Robin Wright and Anton Yelchin.
I’ll spare you and me the writers, but they are interesting, too. [Also, do not ask how long this paragraph has taken me to write and link. It is better not known for it shows my obsessive-compulsive qualities.]

Plot:
A young woman (Emilie Ohana) drives around New York with her video camera, capturing various stories and moments around her.

The single segments deserve their own reviews (mostly) [which I’ll do after the jump] but overall, I have to admit that I was mostly bored during this movie. The stories weren’t connected enough – I expected a more unifying theme – nor were they representative of New York (unless New York barely has any black, hispanic or Asian people and no none-cis gendered, none-hetero persons either). I think most of the segments would have worked beautifully as short films, but bundling them together to one feature film didn’t work out.

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The Hangover (2009)

The Hangover is directed by Todd Phillips and stars Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Zach Galifianakis, Justin Bartha and Heather Graham.

Plot:
Doug (Justin Bartha) is about to get married, so he goes to Las Vegas with his two best friends (Bradley Cooper and Ed Helms) and his future brother-in-law (Zach Galifianakis) for a final party before the shackles of marriage. The next morning, they wake up, Doug is gone, they are all in a very bad state and nobody remembers a thing. Hilarity is supposed to ensue.

I saw the trailer for this film and initially refused to see it. It looked like a sexist pile of crap aka dudebro movie. But after the movie won the Golden Globe I thought I might have misjudged it. So I watched it. Unfortunately, my first instince was completely right.

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