Starring: Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Jane Fonda
Director: Shawn Levy
Running Time: 103 mins
This Is Where I Leave You is an American film about four adult siblings who are forced to return to their family home after the unexpected death of their father, where old rivalries and arguments arise and make the whole period of grieving a complete mess.
This film is a consistently funny comedy with genuinely interesting drama and romances, complimented by fantastic performances that create some properly convincing relationships between the siblings, and whilst it is on occasions a little bit cheesy, it’s still a lot of fun to watch.
Let’s start with the main part of the film, which is the comedy. Some may say that it’s a little toned down to make way for the drama of the story, but it’s actually still pretty crazy. There’s tons of idiotic slapstick and juvenile humour, as well as some good black comedy and hilarious characters that will definitely keep you laughing throughout.
The main place that the comedy emanates from is the relationships between the siblings. The four main actors, in Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Adam Driver and Corey Stoll, have got some great on-screen chemistry, and they work fantastically well as a quartet of siblings who just don’t get along, making for a really convincing relationship between the four of them, and that often results in hilarious and awkward situations all the way throughout the film.
Away from the laughs, this film also succeeds in bringing across some genuinely interesting drama, which is quite rare for a dramedy such as this. Whether it’s the impact of the death of a family member, or the type of holiday romances that blossom at a time like this, it’s actually quite intriguing to follow along with the more serious parts of the characters’ loves and lives, and it is properly emotional all the same.
Despite that, this film does get a little bit cheesy at times. It’s still a very human and interesting drama, but the romances in the latter stages are just a little too much for what is initially a very down-to-earth film, and that can result in you losing interest to some degree as the characters and their situation gets a little bit unrealistic and cheesy.
Overall, though, this gets a 7.4, because despite its cheesiness late on, the majority of this film is an intriguing drama with strong performances and consistently hilarious comedy throughout.