out of Five
Running time: 93
The latest film from writer-director Nicole Holofcener is a delightful, warm-hearted and frequently funny comedy with an emotionally engaging, sharply observed script and a pair of wonderful performances from Julia Louis-Dreyfus and James Gandolfini.
What's it all about?
Written and directed by Nicole Holofcener, Enough Said is set in L.A. and stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Eva, a divorced, middle-aged massage therapist who starts dating similarly divorced, overweight TV archivist Albert (James Gandolfini, in one of his final screen performances) after they meet at a party; the pair also bond over having teenage daughters (Tracey Fairaway as Ellen and Eve Hewson as Tess) the same age who are about to head off to college. At the same
party, Eva also meets published poet Marianne (Catherine Keener), who becomes both her friend and a new client.
When Eva discovers that Albert is actually Marianne's hated ex-husband (whom she repeatedly complains about during their sessions), she decides to keep the information to herself and take advantage of the situation to find out more about her new boyfriend. However, her plan quickly backfires as she finds herself becoming more aware of his faults.
Julia Louis-Dreyfus is wonderful as Eva, essentially delivering the big screen performance we've been waiting for since Seinfeld ended (incredibly, this is her first live-action big screen appearance since Woody Allen's Deconstructing Harry in 1997); she also has surprisingly
strong chemistry with Gandolfini, which makes it all the more painful when we see Eva listening to her head rather than her heart. Gandolfini, in turn, delivers a charming and sympathetic performance as Albert, though it's impossible to watch him without being saddened at the thought of all the future performances his untimely death has stolen from us.
In addition, there's strong comic support from an allowed-to-keep-her-own-accent-for-once Toni Collette as Eva's married best friend and confidante Sarah and Holofcener regular Catherine
Keener as Marianne, while Tracey Fairaway, Eve Hewson and Tavi Gevinson (who has an intriguing subplot as a friend of Ellen's who keeps coming over to hang out with Eva) all provide engaging and memorable turns as the three teenagers.
Holofcener's sharply observed, emotionally captivating script is warm-hearted and frequently laugh-out-loud funny – the dialogue is packed with great lines and there are a number of amusing running jokes, such as Sarah's inability to sack her sharp-tongued maid. It's also thoroughly refreshing to see the theme of middle-aged romance explored as satisfyingly as it is here.
Enough Said is a heart-warming and hugely enjoyable romantic comedy with a very funny, sharply observed script and a pair of wonderful performances from Julia Louis-Dreyfus and James Gandolfini. Highly recommended.