So there’s this swell movie called Ira & Abby. It’s funny. There’s one wacky character. There’s a bunch of other quirky ones. It’s a romance comedy, but it asks the question: why do people still get married? If you’re not part of the 50% that breaks up, the best you can hope for is mutual resignation.
It also asks the question, what’s the difference between a therapist and an analyst.
There are a lot of therapists and analysts in this movie. Usually, I don’t find psychology to be all that funny. But these shrinks aren’t just stick figures held up for ridicule. There is warmth and humanness there that you don’t usually see in movie shrinks. Or TV, since Bob Newhart gave up his shingle all those years ago.
The gal who plays Abby also wrote the script. Her character is ‘way out there, and I can’t imagine anyone else being able to pull it off so well.
Ever since Fernwood 2Night, I’ve really not been a big fan of Fred Willard. I always feel so embarrassed for him. (This is also why I could never watch Seinfeld: I felt so embarrassed for the characters that I just couldn’t stand to watch them.) That’s just the characters he plays. But this time, it really works for me. I saw a non-inept side to him that I’ve never seen before. Even in WALL-E.
Robert Klein can be really funny, but he’s been living that down for years. Often he can be sanctimonious (see Reign Over Me). In this movie, he has every chance to be sanctimonious but he’s not, and he comes off pretty warmly. So I’m really happy about his performance. If only he could stop his leg…
So I’m thinking about double-features, and I’m coming up with: The President’s Analyst. All it really has in common with Ira & Abby is an analyst. But it’s a great movie. Let me re-watch that one, and I’ll give you my review. If you have a chance to see it before then, go for it.
Another choice might be The Movie Hero. It’s got a wacky character, and a creepy character, and a couple others who verge on quirky, but not so much in a good way.
Once again, the connection is a shrink. According to the main character, everyone has an audience, because your life is somebody else’s movie. Yup, that’s why he visits a shrink. It does sound a little paranoid if you ask me. But it’s a romantic comedy, so you don’t have to worry about that part. Although it does seem to be contagious. It’s a cute movie, with a haunting (maybe not in a good way) theme song.
Meet you on the couch!