I'm a fan of Noah Baumbach, Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts, so I was pumped to see While We're Young. I basically begged Dan to take me to the movies last weekend, so that we could see it on opening weekend.
PLOT - Married couple, Cornelia ( Watts) and Josh (Stiller) are in a funk. They're in their early forties and after several miscarriages, they have given up on having kids. Josh peaked early in his career as a documentarian, but he can't seem to complete his current project, which has taken him eight years and is a mess. His funding for the project has run dry. While working his day job as a film professor, he meets a young married couple who are auditing his class. Jaime ( Adam Driver) and Darby ( Amanda Seyfried) immediately captivate Josh, as they hero-worship him for his early films. He is beyond flattered. They invite Josh and Cornelia to join them for dinner and a new friendship is born.
Cornelia and Josh find themselves excited by the youthfulness of their new friends and they quickly become a part of Jaime and Darby's world at the expense of their already established friendships with couples their own age who now are starting families. As Cornelia and Josh struggle to find a place where they belong, it becomes increasingly clear that their friendship with Jaime and Darby may not have been a coincidence.
LIKE - The dialogue. The overall plot of this film is just okay, but the dialogue sparkles and shines. Baumbach has a knack for writing subtle dialogue, that allows the subtext to take center stage. The dialogue is witty, realistic and often poignant. The fantastic cast of this film does justice to Baumbach's characters, especially Watts, who is an absolutely scene stealer in every film in which she is cast.
I liked the themes of While We're Young, especially the idea of not knowing quite where you belong and feeling the constant need to make comparisons to peers or in the character of Josh's case, comparing his success against younger generations. This is a story of learning to own your individual life choices and the realization that everyone is on their own path. It's about learning to love your unique life.
DISLIKE - The plot takes a dive in the last third of the film, when we learn the twist of why Jaime and Darby have befriended Cornelia and Josh. The story weakens at this point and the pacing slows to a crawl. I was really connecting with this film, until the twist.
RECOMMEND - Yes. Even with the story issues, While We're Young was still a very funny and affecting experience. If you're a fan of Baumbach or the cast, this is a must-see. For those feeling lost in their life, this story is a nice reminder of the need to keep things in perspective.