Please Give 3.0 stars

Please Give movie poster

Writer-director Nicole Holofcener, of Friends with Money, Lovely and Amazing, Walking and Talking, transfers her base of operations from the Big Orange to the Big Apple, to consider matters of vanity and charity, love and lust, life and death, among two intersecting circles, or intersecting triangles, of characters. Something of a Nora Ephron without the same craving for popularity, Holofcener is a fount of sophisticated, tart, facile, casual, and, not necessarily all at once, trivial observations on her chosen sphere: the de rigueur autumn-in-New-York activity of “going to see the leaves,” the shade of hair dye expressively labelled “menopausal red,” bad skin, salon tans, overdefined muscles, disproportionate height. And the like. All of that sort of thing — and there’s very little of any other sort of thing — could appear inconsequential except for the cumulative sense of being in the flow of life, noticing the world around us, reacting to it, grappling with it. That’s no small exception: a movie, to put a finer point on it, that makes you feel alive. With Catherine Keener, Oliver Platt, Rebecca Hall, Amanda Peet, Sarah Steele, and Ann Morgan Guilbert. 2010.

Duncan Shepherd

This movie is not currently in theaters.

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