Smashed movie poster

A generational update of the 1994 Andy Garcia-Meg Ryan rehab drama When a Man Loves a Woman. The wife still has a drinking problem and the husband is still an enabler, but there are no kids involved this time (just a faked pregnancy), and hitting bottom involves smoking crack and waking up in a parking lot. Other differences: hubby Aaron Paul is a party-boy beta male living off his parents instead of a successful airline pilot, and the drinking isn't spoiling a seemingly perfect life, just a sustained attempt to feel better and get by in a crumbling world. The script offers some cringeworthy talk about sex and abortion, and few revelations in the addiction department, but maybe every generation needs one of these as they start to figure out the dangers of demon rum. For those who are already familiar, there is at least the pleasure of watching an able cast at work. Star Mary Elizabeth Winstead is believable, and sometimes even compelling, as the drunk wife. Only Octavia Spencer, in the thankless role of inspirational AA sponsor, seems wasted. With Nick Offerman, Megan Mullally. 2012.

Matthew Lickona

This movie is not currently in theaters.


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