For Reel

While We’re Young (2015)
April 19, 2015, 2:05 pm
Filed under: Reviews | Tags: , ,

Director: Noah Baumbach
3.5 Stars
While We're YoungIn Greenberg, Ben Stiller ranted to a party full of millennials about their misplaced over-confidence and sincerity, exclaiming, “I’m freaked out by you kids!” While We’re Young plays like a continuation of the thought, initially starting with generational harmony before becoming increasingly paranoiac–it’s All About Eve, if not Invasion of the Body Snatchers in the us vs. them mentality it exhibits. The occasional bouts of anger and the smugness in the characterizations of the young (their very hipness first serves as a contrast to the older generation, later as a running joke) are familiar of Albert Brooks’ combative, satirical works. But despite his success in demonstrating an increasing skepticism coming from within the aging Generation X, director Noah Baumbach’s discussion of objectivity and subjectivity in the documentary form has a distracting and tenuous relationship with the rest of the material. The last third takes a wild turn into territory covered by James L. Brooks’ Broadcast News. But Stiller, as in Greenberg, excels at playing the increasingly bitter flag-bearer of his generation, and Adam Driver does a good job of walking the line between sincerity and condescension–one has no trouble imagining why he could get under the skin of someone with Stiller’s insecurities.

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