2012 Running time: 87 Certificate: 15 Rating: 3
KA The Oranges

Synopsis

Two best of buddy families - the Ostroffs and the Wallings - quietly wish that prodigal daughter Nina Ostroff (Leighton Meester) will fall for ideal suitor Toby Walling (Adam Brody) when she turns up for Thanksgiving after five years. Unfortunately, she falls for his dad (Hugh Laurie). And it looks like the feeling's mutual. First-time Brit director Julian Farino whips up a warm and wise comedy drama enriched by standout performances from Laurie and the radiant Meester.

Director

  • Julian Farino

Cast

  • Leighton Meester

  • Hugh Laurie

  • Catherine Keener

  • Allison Janney

  • Adam Brody

Review

It's good news when your daughter falls for the boy next door. It's not so good when she falls for the boy next door's dad.

That's the quandary facing New Jersey suburbanites Terry and Cathy (Platt and Janney) when their rebellious daughter Nina (Meester) heads home for Thanksgiving...and falls into a clinch with family friend David (Laurie).

He's been having relationship problems with his wife Paige (Keener) and his blossoming romance with Nina spells an end of the weekly dinners, daily jogs and summer barbecues enjoyed by both families.

The cathartic shockwaves from David and Nina's tentative-fling-turned-full-blown-relationship are wryly charted by debut British director Julian Farino in a low-key dramedy that takes the viewer in unexpected directions.

The emotional fall-out of the tryst is seen through the eyes of David's daughter (and Nina's erstwhile best friend) Vanessa (Shawkat) and it's she - still living at home and stuck in a dead-end job - who suffers most from pop's affair.

On the other hand, Paige quicky realises that her marriage was firmly on the rocks and launches herself into international charity providing goats for African villages appeal while Terry and Cathy rediscover their sexual spark.

Strangely, nowhere do we see David and Nina sexually sparking, which - let's face it - is the key point of prurient interest into their May to September hook-up.

Rumpy-pumpy apart, this is an honest look into stale relationships and an ultimately optimistic view of how things can change even if they initially appear slightly ikky.

Tim Evans

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