The Hollars ⭐️⭐️½

In yet another indie family dramedy, the younger brother (played by John Krasinski) returns to his hometown when a family member fell ill. The more than familiar setup is not helped by some fairly predictable plotting. Guess what’s gonna happen to the divorced with kids older sibling (played with manic energy by Sharlto Copley) whose ex-wife is now dating the local pastor played by Josh Groban? And the younger sibling’s girlfriend is a rich pet costume designer played by Anna Kendrick and she’s so pregnant she can give birth anytime? Her character may as well be called whimsically quirky plot device. While there are touching moments that bring the emotions up front, it is not a film that will surprise anyone and it is up to the performances to make this watchable and that they do. Krasinski is likeable and Richard Jenkins’ dad is charmingly vulnerable (perhaps the only characterisation that isnt plucked from the generic rule book) but the film is totally the (for the BoJack Horseman fans: Character Actress) Margo Martindale show and she carries the film from drama to comedy and back and injects most of the poignancy and pathos that keep the film afloat. A nice effort by first time director Krasinski but maybe he needs a more challenging script next time.

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