Review: While We’re Young

All good until it goes sour

Review: While We’re Young
Stiller, Watts and a blankie.

The notably caustic Noah Baumbach, not quite as chilly as Wes Anderson or the Coens but a far cry from Richard Linklater or even Kevin Smith, changed his tune with 2012’s wonderful Frances Ha, about a 20-something trying to find herself in New York. It was co-written by and starred Greta Gerwig, Baumbach’s real-life love. She is nowhere to be found in While We’re Young, and clearly—if you couldn’t tell already—provided Frances’ warmth, because this marks a return to calculated cold form for the writer-director. Ben Stiller stands in for him as Josh, a Filmmaker With Principles, married to Naomi Watts. Adam Driver is Jamie, an ambitious Brooklyn kid who shoots cell phone videos, married to Amanda Seyfried’s ice cream-maker (organic, natch). The younger couple’s boho DIY life intrigues the Olds, who have been cast aside by their friends with babies. Baumbach has lots of interesting things to say about art, age and how to live, but it’s all relatively undercut by a melodramatic turn, complete with overwrought score, that pitches Driver way too far to one side as a calculating villain. Disappointingly, the women mostly exist to be support objects while the men get to chew over the meaning of everything—get Gerwig back on the case!—but until the sourness seeps in, this is an engaging contemporary comedy.

About The Author

Support The Coast

At a time when the city needs local coverage more than ever, we’re asking for your help to support independent journalism. We are committed as always to providing free access to readers, particularly as we confront the impact of COVID-19 in Halifax and beyond.

Read more about the work we do here, or consider making a donation. Thank you for your support!

Comments (1)

Add a comment

Add a Comment

Get more Halifax

The Coast Daily email newsletter is your extra dose of the city Monday through Friday. Sign up and go deep on Halifax.


Recent Comments