Kicking And Screaming

Superficially, this first feature by 25-year-old writer-director Noah Baumbach (1995) — a comedy about four male college graduates who find themselves unable to leave campus and start their lives — calls to mind Bodies, Rest & Motion and Reality Bites (both of which shared this movie’s producer, Joel Castleberg) as well as the two brittle and literate features of Whit Stillman, Metropolitan and Barcelona (both sharing actor Chris Eigeman). But part of what makes this effort more soulful and sustaining than any of those reference points is the curiosity and alertness of Baumbach’s direction of his actorsEigeman, Josh Hamilton, Jason Wiles, Carlos Jacott, Eric Stoltz, Olivia d’Abo, Elliott Gould, Cara Buono, and Parker Posey. There’s plenty of wit on the surface, but the pain of paralysis comes through loud and clear. Check this one out. (JR)

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