Starring Jason Bateman, Nicole Kidman, Kathryn Hahn, Christopher Walken, Maryann Plunkett, Jason Butler Harner
Directed by Jason Bateman
2016 / 105 Minutes / Starz Digital Media

I really enjoyed Jason Bateman’s feature directing debut Bad Words so I was expecting this to be pretty much on par with that one, after seeing the trailer. Unfortunately it’s not as good as Bad Words, but there’s a great story here based on Kevin Wilson’s novel. Bateman and Kidman play siblings dealing with their famous parents who have suddenly disappeared. Their parents have been pulling stunts like this their whole lives so you can imagine how their children have turned out.

I thought the story was unique and original, but it’s Bateman and Kidman’s characters that are really the most interesting here. The parents missing storyline and twist is really the dull part of the movie that you kind of care less about by the time the end comes. It’s this brother and sister and the effects their parents have had on their lives that really drives the story and I feel could have been delved into more. Nicole Kidman seems like an unusual choice for this movie, but she’s great in it, particularly at the beginning where we see her as a struggling actress.

I don’t know how I really feel about this movie. It’s definitely a good movie, I’m just not sure it satisfied me fully. I wanted to like it even more, but something about it loses steam near the end. I think Jason Bateman is impressive in the directing role and I look forward to more of his films. It’s unique, funny and mostly entertaining. Worth seeing, just not great.

Grade B-

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