Louis-Dreyfus and Gandolfini deliver solid performances in ‘Enough Said’
Published: Monday, October 7, 2013
Updated: Monday, October 7, 2013 23:10
They simply don’t make films like “Enough Said” anymore. A critical darling at film festivals, this romantic dramedy starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus and the late James Gandolfini as two middle-aged, single divorcees with daughters heading off to college. No, it’s not the second coming, but it stands as a solid 90 plus minutes you can spend at the theater.
The film tells the story of Eva (Louis-Dreyfus), a massage therapist wondering what she’s going to do after her only daughter heads off to college. At a party, she meets Albert (Gandolfini) and after a few days, they begin dating. Initially unbeknownst to all parties involved, one of Eva’s new clients turns out to be Albert’s ex-wife.
Meanwhile, Eva struggles with her daughter wanting to spend less time with her, and as such begins to form a close bond with one of her daughter’s friends, much to the latter’s irritation.
When discussing the film, the first thing that comes to mind is just how funny Gandolfini and Louis-Dreyfus are together. Seeing them interact and converse in a down to earth manner provides a lot of laughs. The film doesn’t force the humor out either; it’s a very natural flow.
The brilliance of the film shows just how disconnected film executives and marketing brass are with the creative process. “Enough Said” proves loud and clear that you can have a solid, character-driven romantic film that doesn’t include, graphic and raunchy sex scenes, copious amounts of pathetic and forced throwaway gags and, perhaps most importantly, a pair of “hip” 20 or 30-something-year-old costars. The film lacks all of the above, and thanks to two solid leads, it manages to got along just fine.
A staple of comedic television for well over two decades, Louis-Dreyfus successfully adapts her trademark style to the silver screen. However, while no one has ever denied the actress’s comedic chops, “Enough Said” is a fine example of her ability to perform remarkably well dramatically when the scene requires it.
Quite the opposite is the case for Gandolfini. Most well known for his iconic role as mobster Tony Soprano, audiences are not as accustomed to seeing the actor in more light hearted fare. Far from a psychotic gangster, Gandolfini’s touching portrayal as a calm, humorous, single father showcases the late actor’s great diversity. It’s a shame the actor wasn’t given more time to present this side of himself.
All praise aside, “Enough Said” doesn’t break any new ground, and yes, it does fall victim to clichés of the genre. The final third of the film is easily predictable, without any surprises along the way. It doesn’t try to be a masterpiece, and it doesn’t have to. It takes solid performances from two incredibly accomplished actors and wraps them together in a humorous, touching story that can be called nothing less than pleasantly charming.