Momma's Man

Film
Recommended
5 out of 5 stars
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Time Out says

5 out of 5 stars
You’ve probably lost count as to how many of cinema’s thirtysomething losers are forced back into the arms of their mothers for reasons of psychological or financial breakdown. In this intoxicating, mysterious film, American indie director Azazel Jacobs offers a subtle and rewarding twist on that time-worn model. Easy-going schlub Mikey (Matt Boren) decides to take a detour while heading home to his adoring wife and child at the end of a business trip, and pays his elderly folks an extended house call.

In another unique twist, the parents are played by Jacobs’s own: experimental filmmaker Ken Jacobs and his doe-eyed better half, Flo. Furthermore, most of the film unfolds in their cluttered New York loft. As the ageing pair go about their routines (Ken tinkering with video art, Flo cleaning, cooking and doting on her boys), Mikey, with his mobile switched off, rifles through accumulated knick-knacks and attempts to deal with the anxieties surfacing within him as he surges towards middle age.

Beautifully photographed on 16mm and playing like an upside-down riff on ‘Tokyo Story’, Jacobs’s film tracks a dearth of communication between the generations. He emphasises the silent despair felt by parents who are too ill-equipped emotionally and practically to offer help to troubled offspring. Yet, no voices are raised, no plates thrown – instead, awkward pauses and gestures and moments of self-examination give it a rich texture. It’s a lovely work, sad and funny. A melancomedy, if you will.

Posted:

Details

Release details

Rated:
15
Release date:
Friday May 8 2009
Duration:
98 mins

Cast and crew

Director:
Azazel Jacobs
Screenwriter:
Azazel Jacobs
Cast:
Ken Jacobs
Flo Jacobs
Matt Boren
Dana Varon