Louis-Dreyfus, Gandolfini do their thing. 'Enough Said'
There's an amusing wistfulness to Nicole Holofcener's latest exploration of woman and love, “Enough Said.” And since it co-stars the late-James Gandolfini, you can throw in a touch of melancholy, a sort of dark cloud that hangs over an otherwise light and hopeful L.A. romance among those pushing 50. He gives a poignancy to one of his last screen appearances that lives on past his death.
Julia Louis-Dreyfus stars as Eva, a long-divorced single-mom and massage therapist. Her job is a bore, her daughter (Tracey Fairaway) is about to move off to college and she's resigned to the shrinking dating scene she faces.
Then, Eva joins her friends (Toni Collette, Ben Falcone) for a party. That's where she meets Marianne (Catherine Keener). She could be a new customer and maybe even a new friend.
And then Eva meets the portly, frumpy Albert (Gandolfini), who clicks with her because they both find “no one at this party I'm attracted to.” They're both down on rude “younger people.” He finds her random, inappropriate wisecracks funny, and he's able to make her laugh, too.
They date, even though she's hesitant. She tries not to judge the way he loads his low-fat yogurt with M&Ms or look askance at his Sunday sweatpants-for-brunch routine.
That becomes tricky when Eva realizes that the ex-husband her new client / pal Marianne is constantly griping about is named Albert, too. Her “Fat Albert” must be Marianne's Fat Albert.
That's a slim coincidence to build a movie on, but Dreyfus makes the most of it — letting us see the wheels turn as Eva starts looking for the same faults that her friend saw in Albert, and then tries to figure out how to address this “problem” of revealing to one that she knows the other. Dreyfus wears Eva's neediness on her sleeve, reaching for her sounding board (Collette's character is a shrink), clinging to a teenager who actually listens to her, her daughter's best friend (Tavi Gevinson).
What's fun here, to a point, is the collision of sensibilities. Dreyfus has made this sort of lovelorn joker her specialty, with a “Seinfeld”-polished bag of expressions, laughs and acting moves.
Gandolfini is charming and winning, but the butt of too many calorie-counting jokes to let us forget that he died — overweight and entirely too young — earlier this year. That knowledge doesn't hurt “Enough Said.” It actually deepens an otherwise-lightweight romance.
Roger Moore is a writer for McClatchy-Tribune News Service.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.