Julia Louis-Dreyfus and the late James Gandolfini may not seem like the ideal on-screen couple, but in Nicole Holofcener’s newest project “Enough Said,” the two older actors seem like a match made in movie heaven.
In the film, Louis-Dreyfus plays Eva, a divorced, middle-aged massage therapist who is coming to grips with her daughter’s impending college move while navigating the murky waters of dating at an older age.
Gandolfini’s Albert is at the same stage in life and it’s at a friend’s party where him and Eva meet.
At that same party Eva meets Marianne (Catherine Keener) Albert’s ex-wife and Eva’s newest client.
Even though Eva and Albert didn’t hit it off at the party, Albert ends up convincing her to go on a date with him and the couple’s chemistry is instantly sparked.
Eva’s relationships with both Marianne and Albert grow, as she becomes a confidant for Marianne to complain about her ex-husband and a girlfriend to Albert.
It’s not until Eva connects an anecdote about Albert’s eating habits that she realizes that she’s torn between two ends of a nasty divorce.
It’s with this tension that Holofcener finds her story’s true heart.
Does Eva listen, and ultimately believe, Marianne’s constant berating of Albert or does she form her own opinion of him instead?
Dreyfus’ acting ability is on full showcase in “Enough Said” as the 52-year-old actress gives arguably her best performance on the silver screen. However, it’s Gandolfini who truly shines in the film.
There’s an incredible sense of calm in Gandolfini’s portrayal of Albert and even though most of America knows him as Tony Soprano, the strong and silent patriarch on the HBO drama “The Sopranos,” Gandolfini posseses quite the comedic timing.
It’s almost as if Gandolfini’s acting styling was better suited for cinema all along.
Supporting cast like Toni Collette and Ben Falcone round out the film’s minor characters.
Even though Holofcener’s name has virtually no recognition in the common American household, the writer-director combo displays a sense of confidence in her project that makes it seem like it came from the biggest of Hollywood studios.
Holofcener’s razor-sharp script is a shining example that sometimes the best movies aren’t full of CGI-robots and such but simply focus on compelling characters reveling in the mundane instead.
In Holofcener’s world, simplicity pays off.
“Enough Said” opens in theaters today.