While We’re Young

Alright! Another Noah Baumbach movie!

This is what I thought when i first heard about While We’re Young. It’s only when I IMDBed him that I realized that I had really only seen one of his movies. I missed Greenbeg. I don’t know how but I missed Frances Ha. But I saw The Squid and the Whale. Baumbach’s 2005 family drama was funny in the saddest way possible and I guess it left so much of an impression on me that I began to think of myself as a fan. But apparently not enough of one to actually watch his other While We're Youngfilms.

I did manage to catch his latest- While We’re Young- last week though. Like The Squid and the Whale, it’s funny in a sad way but much more laugh-out-loud funny, while TSATW was more cringe out-loud funny. Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts play  Josh and Cornelia- a forty-something married couple who are finding less and less in common with their friends that have little to talk about other than all the babies that they’re having. Josh starts worrying that his best days are behind him when he discovers that he has arthritis arthritis but all that changes when he meets Jamie and Darby- a couple of sensation-seeking twenty-somethings played by Adam Driver and Amanda Seyfried. Hungry for new While We're Young 2experiences, Josh and Cornelia spend as much time with these new friends as they can and their relationship moves in some surprising directions.

Adam Driver has a weird presence on screen and I’m not sure how I feel about him yet but he and Seyfried are fun to watch as the young couple with surprisingly old-fashioned tastes. They believe it’s better to build a desk than to buy one. They have an extensive record collection while their older friends keep all their music online.. Baumbach doesn’t understand youngsters today any better than josh does though and the forty-somethings get all the best moments. He manages to keep Stiller’s While We're Young 3instinct to overplay everything to death mostly under control and Watts, in her fourth film since we started this site six months ago, is better than she’s been in a long time, especiallyl when she’s dancing to Tupac.

While We’re Young works best as a comedy about two people trying to be young again and is smart enough to keep it simple and relatable . It loses its focus by the end with a lot of bizarre turns in the last half hour but still gives us a lot to think about- especially when I realized I, at the age of 33, related to Josh and Cornelia a lot more than I did Jamie and Darby. Guess I’m due for another sacred puking ritual.

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13 thoughts on “While We’re Young

    1. mattasshole Post author

      I’m not sure how long Adam Driver’s momentum is going to last. If weird and douchey is all he’s got, people are going to get wise pretty soon.
      If you like Ben Stiller, you should like this. I haven’t seen him be this funny in a long time. Lately he’s seemed to be believing his own hype a little too much. Thanks for stopping by.

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  1. Jay

    I watched this with dread, constantly trying to figure out whether we were more like the old couple, or the young one, and not liking it when we leaned either way really. You’re spot on with this. Ben Stiller was reigned in. Adam Driver, though I still don’t like him, is well-cast, since I’m not supposed to.
    I was enjoying it up until the last bit. Amanda Seyfried just disappeared. Even worse though, is how Baumbach sold out the older couple. Their happily ever after is such bullshit. I felt really let down.

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    1. mattasshole Post author

      I kept trying to figure out whether I was relating to the older couple because they were more believable characters of if I am in fact getting old. I don’t think I was ever much like Jamie and Darby even when I was in my twenties though.
      Such a shame about the ending, you’re right. I don’t know how a movie that showed such promise went off the rails so quickly and completely by the end.

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  2. Pingback: Paterson | ASSHOLES WATCHING MOVIES

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