Since yesterday’s holiday fell on a Wednesday, there was no family gathering to go to. Soooo, we took in another movie. 🙂 “People Like Us” has been out for a while and, though I wanted to see it, Danny has been hesitant. Wellll, it was quite good: touching, frustrating, and funny in all the right places. Why are people so afraid of emotions? They are a normal part of human life, but some people close up rather than express themselves.
Sam (Chris Pine) is a fast-talking wheeler-dealer and natural liar, living with his girlfriend in NYC. However, on the day one of his deals turns sour – literally – he learns that his lying, lousy father has died in L.A. Hannah (Olivia Wilde) books them a flight, but they miss it and arrive many hours after the funeral to the family home. His mother, Lillian (Michelle Pfeiffer), is extremely disappointed in her son, whom she has not seen in years. Estranged is an understatement in this small family unit.
From his father’s lawyer, Sam learns he has inherited his father’s extensive record collection and an old leather shaving kit. Inside is $150K in cash and a note to deliver it to someone named Josh Davis. Sam could really use that money, because his sour deal was going to cost him $84K and a meeting with the FTC. However, he takes his dad’s vintage red cadillac convertible and seeks out this stranger. Josh (Michael Hall D’Addario) turns out to be his heretofore unknown 11-year-old nephew and son of his heretofore unknown half-sister, Frankie (Elizabeth Banks). It’s weird, but Pine and Banks do look like siblings.
Frankie turns out to be a natural liar, too, as well as an ex-addict and single mother. Smart-mouthed Josh is constantly in trouble, of course, and friendless until Sam comes along. Sam offends Hannah, who returns to NYC alone, ignores his financial troubles to learn more about his new family, who he misleads, and continues to keep their existence from his mother. Dysfunctional? Oh, yeah
Heartache and joy bring the characters together in this film. Pine, Banks, and D’Addario did fine jobs. My eyes leaked a little at the end. However, in reality, $150K would not go that far in Los Angeles.
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.