Walking and Talking
Time Out saysAmelia (Keener) and Laura (Heche) have been best friends since childhood, but when Laura agrees to marry live-in lover Frank (Field), Amelia begins to feel abandoned. True, she decides to try giving up therapy once and for all, but her support system - an adored but ailing cat, an ex (Schreiber) now addicted to phone sex with a woman in California - isn't all it might be, while an ill-starred date with a weirdo video-store assistant (Corrigan) doesn't do much for her confidence either. Still, at least she has some idea of what she wants, whereas Laura, once engaged, starts finding fault with everything Frank does and says, and fantasising (irony of ironies - she's a trainee shrink) about her clients. Writer/director Nicole Holofcener's deliciously witty first feature is a perceptive comedy-drama which, despite its New York setting and its fascination with neuroses, anxieties, desire and relationships, is far fresher and more rewarding than the 'female Woody Allen' tag invoked by some critics. The sassy, snappy dialogue is less a matter of one- liners than a wryly amusing exploration of personality; story and gags alike are at the service of characterisation, so that we're never allowed to forget the very real pain, confusion, guilt and affection that underpins the movie. Great cast, immense fun.