Starring: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, James Gandolfini, Catherine Keener
Genre: Comedy/ Drama/ Romance
Divorced single mum Eva (Louis-Dreyfus) is a masseuse by trade and constantly trying to be setup by her friends, especially with her daughter’s impending leave for college. At a party she meets Albert (Gandolfini), a kind hearted man in a similar situation with his daughter. Though she is not sure about him at first, they do eventually start a relationship. Also at the same party Eva met a poet by the name of Marianne (Keener) who becomes a client and a friend that is constantly talking about her ex husband in a less than positive manner. When Eva realises who exactly Marianne’s ex husband is it not only puts Eva in an awkward situation, but what Marianne says makes Eva question her relationship with Albert.
Though as contrived as that plot sounds, Enough Said has enough heart, soul and intelligence to make its slightly predictable contrivances and flaws perfectly forgivable. Enough Said is a very watchable and quite gentle drama with the occasionally comedic moment from start to finish with characters to genuinely care about. Holofcener uses the plot simply as a vehicle to explore some universal themes and observations we can all relate to, no matter what our age. A deeper examination of these themes would have required a shift in tone, and so it is understandable why that wasn’t attempted by Holofcener, but it unfortunately does render Enough Said ultimately as a forgettable experience.
Julia Louis-Dreyfus proves to be a very likeable screen presence and gives a perfectly judged performance as Eva, combining comedy and drama perfectly when the script requires it. In what will tragically be one of his final roles, James Gandolfini gives a gentle and very likeable performance that couldn’t be further from Tony Soprano.
As the admittedly predictable plot takes place, Enough Said is never less than watchable, and it deals with intelligence some familiar universal themes around relationships and family that we all have or will experience at some point in our lives. Though all the generations of characters within the narrative certainly serve a purpose, I would argue that there are perhaps too many characters for the lean 93 minutes and so some feel underused. A subplot involving a friend of Eva’s daughter ultimately feels unnecessary, and though there is a clear point for it being in the narrative, the film may have been better off without it in my view. Enough Said may not change your way of looking at anything in particular or linger long in the memory but is certainly a watchable experience.
Despite the very contrived narrative, Holofcener uses it to produce a well acted, well written and well observed film about some universal themes we can all relate to. It may not change your life, but is certainly a very watchable and engaging comedy/ drama.