Philip Seymour Hoffman’s directorial debut is a charming, incredibly sweet take on love in the big city. Drawn from a play, the films setting remains reasonably contained in scope, but never feels claustrophobic the way some transitions from stage to screen feel.
The chemistry between Hoffman and the always fabulous Amy Ryan is a delight, their awkward interplay fitting for their characters (not dissimilar, it should be noted, to the type of role she plays occasionally on TVs THE OFFICE). John Ortiz and Daphne Rubin-Vega make for an electric, passionate couple still coming to terms with a great infidelity, the cuckolding hanging a silent air over their outwardly warm marriage.
This is a talky New York ensemble piece of the finest order, and the direction does much to keep things real without being overly earnest or manipulative. Telling the tale without unnecessary flourish, Hoffman and his group have told this little tale well and with great humour, another fine contribution by this treasure of contemporary cinema.