Clea DuVall’s writing/directing feature debut finds several friends gathering for a weekend with a difficult purpose: Annie (Melanie Lynskey), Jack (Ben Schwartz), Jessie (DuVall) and several others intend to tell married couple Ruby (Cobie Smulders) and Peter (Vincent Piazza) that their relationship has turned so ugly that they should separate. Naturally, there are plenty of “physician, heal thyself” relationship foibles to go around among the others, and DuVall does a fine job of conveying how Annie’s issues in particular shape the way she approaches Ruby and Peter’s issues. And the ensemble is pretty uniformly terrific, with Lynskey getting most of the prime punch lines as the high-strung, often inebriated Annie, and Smulders finding a genuinely affecting core of sadness in Ruby’s realization that her marriage is collapsing. The other characters’ dramas never find the same complexity, leading to something that might have been better served with either fewer characters or more time. What remains is still an engaging bit of Big Chill-ish reflection on being 30-something and still trying to figure out what you want out of love when you grow up.
Director: Clea DuVall
Producer: Sam Slater, Paul Bernon, Sev Ohanian, Mel Eslyn, Clea DuVall and David Bernon
Cast: Clea DuVall, Melanie Lynskey, Natasha Lyonne, Vincent Piazza, Jason Ritter, Ben Schwartz, Alia Shawkat and Cobie Smulders