"People Places Things"
Release Date: Aug. 21, 2015
Running Time: 86 minutes
People Place Things is the very definition of congenial. Director James C. Strouse’s lightly humorous kitchen-sink comedy hates confrontation as much as the parents that are pitted against each other over custody of their 6-year-old twin daughters. Everything unfolds in the most passive and amiable ways imaginable from the moment Jemaine Clement’s graphic novelist Will discovers his common-law wife, Charlie (Stephanie Allynne), cheating on him with a monologist. Following their split, Will and Charlie take a lackadaisical approach to looking after their kids. They love their daughters but they’re not very good at creating the structured environment that kids their age need to help them thrive. Compounding problems is Will’s on-again, off-again relationship with Diane (Regina Hall), the mother of one of the students in the university class Will teaches. There comes a point in People Place Things when Will’s affability proves too irritating to ignore. He’s content to let life happen around him without advancing his own causes for fear it might create some waves. When he tries to take control of things, he does so in such a way that he doesn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings or step on their toes, even if that’s what the situation requires. Take, for example, the moment when Will threatens Charlie’s lover with violence. Not that Will ever lets his anger show. Will’s simply too too much of a good guy for his own good, and Clement nails his pleasing personality without too much effort or an ounce of cynicism. There’s nice and, evidenced by People Place Things, there’s too nice.
Aired: Aug. 20, 2015
Web site: http://www.peopleplacesthingsfilm.com/