Laurel Canyon (2002)

LISA CHOLODENKO

Bil’s rating (out of 5):   BBBB.

USA, 2002.  , , .  Screenplay by Lisa Cholodenko.  Cinematography by .  Produced by , .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  

Lisa Cholodenko’s follow-up to her critically acclaimed High Art is another probing examination of relationships in modern day Los Angeles.   is a straight-laced med student who has moved back to the city of Angels with his equally studious fiance () for his hospital internship. Since it’s the same city where his record producer mother () lives, he decides to stay in her house while hoping not to have to deal with the chasm that divides them. The ladies of AbFab have nothing on the differences between this mother and child, and through McDormand’s relationship with  and his attraction to Beckinsale, lots of complications ensue that reveal more than at first meets the eye. Meanwhile, Bale is having the hots for a senior intern () that could also contribute to ruining his relationship. The film isn’t really about anything, but the relationships are realistically drawn and the dialogue excellent, brought to life by fantastic performances from the entire cast. McDormand has never been more attractive or interesting, and Bale makes his stick-in-the-mud character compelling without ever being annoying.

Toronto International Film Festival:  2002

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