Thursday, March 3, 2016

While We're Young

Ben Stiller, Naomi Watts,
Amanda Seyfried, Adam Driver

"Life Never Gets Old"

Noah Baumbach's 2014 offering is a comedy that explores the disconnect between generations. The millenials with their sense of entitlement vs those who are now in their middle age period who had to work hard for everything and didn't just wait for things to be handed down to them.

It is presented through the eyes of a 40 something childless New York married couple Josh (Ben Stiller) and Cornelia (Naomi Watts). They start hanging out with their new friends, a much younger couple Jamie (Adam Driver) and Darby (Amanda Seyfried). Soon the older couple feel a renewed sense of energy which seemed to have escaped from their marriage, their career and their lives, in general. But thankfully, the older couple come back to their senses and realize with much disgust, the true nature of the hipster couple.

The first part of the movie offers sharp and though provoking observations about aging. How easily it is for couples who have been together for several years to fall into a rut in their lives. The insights are best presented within the scenes and older characters. Ben Stiller is good in these types of characters  - those who somehow through time become complacent yet complain about every single disenchantment that complicates their lives. As Josh, he fits the stereotype and essays his character with aplomb. Naomi Watts who is a steady actress is equally good as his wife Cornelia.

But for me the interesting part occurs once Josh realizes how disarming Jamie and Darby really are. How he tries to extricate himself from his 'newer' self even though it was a more enjoyable and less boring phase for Josh and Cornelia. Their change in attitude is refreshing yet they should also find a way to still remain true to themselves.

"While we're young" is a relatable comedy that should appeal to any generation. Good writing and a reliable cast add a charming touch to an otherwise contrived conclusion. A nice case study to see the distinction and also the similar appeal between these featured generations.

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