Not all movies make me cry. I’m not necessarily a major weeper, but if a movie or a TV show strikes just the right chord, then my tears are a melody of all my feels.
That being said, there are some movies that make me cry more than most – and make me cry every time I watch them. This is one of those movies. (Beware: there are obviously spoilers.)
Do yourself a favour and watch this movie.
Anyone who comes from a large family knows that life gets complicated when you have a lot of opinions shared in one small space.
Other than all of the adults, at one point or another, calling their mother “mommy,” this movie speaks the truth of what it means when a large family gets together as adults.
This Is Where I Leave You shows a family of four children who come together after their father has died to honour his last request – that they all sit shiva, and spend seven days together. Or, as their mother Jane Fonda says, “You are all grounded.” So it doesn’t seem like a huge surprise, when you learn that it’s four children grieving the loss of their father, that this movie made me cry.
But it’s way more than just that one plot point. This movie, based on the yet-to-be-read Jonathan Tropper book of the same name, shows real people facing real difficulties and reacting in real ways. It’s one of the most honest movies I’ve seen in a long time that doesn’t leave me wanting to cry in a corner drinking a bottle of wine to drown my sadness. Because even though it’s honest, it’s not depressing – it’s just life.
People have a lot of shit to deal with in their lives, but they continue on living it the best way they know how. And in all of that mess, it’s really quite beautiful.
Now, before you assume that I just cried for 103 minutes straight, there were a few moments that got me the most. Obviously Tina Fey’s story gets you right in the feels as its layers are slowly unpeeled like an emotional onion. And when Jason Bateman cries, I’m just completely gone. But there are other moments, like when Adam Driver tells his big sister Tina that she raised him and she’s the voice in his head, not Mom, not Dad – her.
And even though seven days under one roof for a family who rarely sees each other is a lot to handle, anyone who has handled it knows that the chaos and the mess is inevitable. Life is complicated and not in a Meryl-Streep-sleeping-with-Alec-Baldwin kind of “it’s complicated,” more like a The-Family-Stone-without-SJP kind of wonderful complicated.
So if you have ever experienced the madness of your own family, seriously, watch This Is Where I Leave You.
If for nothing else, watch it for the scene when Jason Bateman, Adam Driver and Corey Stoll get high in temple.