HELEN HUNT LIEV SCHREIBER CARLA GUGINO
EZRA MILLER EDDIE LIZZARD BRIAN DENNEHY
Every Day is another one of those small, independent, well cast, would-be fantastic dramas that suffer due to a lack of creative writing. It seems these television producers, writers and directors assume the transition into feature film will be as simple as spending a long time on one script versus a small amount of time on many scripts. Writer/director Richard Levine, one of the men behind the success of Nip/Tuck, has almost everything in order for a promising film starring Oscar winner Helen Hunt. Every Day tackles too many stereotypes that we see far too often, yet as a dog with only one functioning leg ventures into uncharted, nearly fascinating territory, so does this movie with only one subplot.
A modern day family living in the suburbs of New York tackles the many issues that come their way. Jeannie (Hunt) and Ned (Schreiber) have been married for 19 years. They met in college, started a family, and now have two shaggy haired boys, Jonah (Miller), who is 15 and openly gay, and 11 year old Ethan (Skyler Fortgang), who is still terrified of everything. Jeannie’s distant and verbally abusive father (Dennehy) is dying and, even through she resents him, she moves him into their already busy home, creating a bigger barrier between Jeannie and Ned’s love life. Unable to cope with his gay son, father-in-law, and horrible job as a sleazy soap opera writer, Ned begins fooling around with a colleague.
Sexually deprived parents -- seen it. Resentful daughter dealing with dying parent -- overdone. Husband cheating on wife with sleazy coworker -- an American movie pastime. Levine’s script is almost laughable because, while Hunt and Schreiber perform their roles well and honestly, they are without originality or diversity. Ironically, the one interesting element to this film that I haven’t seen before is the relationship between a loving, realist type father and a gay teenage son. The dialogue between these two characters is the only time you feel you are actually seeing something you can’t just flip on the television and watch. Every Day (which is certainly an honest title) is chocked full of scenarios of no interest when this one father/son relationship could have been a gold mine.
The one scene where this film tries to have a touching moment is nothing more than a rip off of a scene in Benjamin Button; Jeannie has one single bonding moment with her hateful father over the water, just as Benjamin did with his father. Some critics called this movie soap opera material and I don’t think it’s that bad, it just tries to tell too many stories in a small time frame, giving none of the segments the time they deserve. I got very aggravated by the end of this movie because I didn’t feel like I had one character I could invest in to keep things running and then the ending just sort of concludes abruptly, leaving me with unresolved feelings.
Final Thought – Suffers due to an unequipped writer/director from television.
Grade C By: Dustin Chase W. Editor: Michael Woody