Saturday, November 17, 2012

Hello I Must Be Going (Rhoades)

“Hello I Must Be
Going” Arrives

Reviewed by Shirrel Rhoades

Groucho Marx came up with the line used as this film’s title, but it says all there is to say about the subject of this dramedy: Getting over a divorce.
With “Hello I Must Be Going,” we share the midlife crisis of a 35-year-old woman who has moved back in with her parents following her breakup.
Amy Minsky (played by Melanie Lynskey) is morosely watching Groucho on TV when her dad mentions that he used to take her to see all the Marx Brothers movies.
After a friendly (“I wish”) divorce from her lawyer husband, Amy moves about in a malaise, sleeps till noon, wears baggy old T-shirts (“Buy some new clothes,” everyone tells her), and bumps into an old high school acquaintance who doesn’t recognize her.
As a matter of fact, Amy doesn’t quite recognize herself.
In her third month of hiding at her parents’ airy Connecticut home, Amy has reverted to adolescence. Or maybe she never left adolescent and it’s that she’s dealing with rather than a midlife crisis.
So she’s quite unprepared to come to the attentions of younger man, a 19-year-old named Jeremy (Christopher Abbott). How does she handle being a latter-day Mrs. Robinson?
Well, with gusto, it turns out.
The comical sex scenes take place in the back of cars and in an unfinished rec room – suburbia absurdia, you might call it.
Chris Abbott gives a great performance as the high school grad that Amy falls into bed with. And Blythe Danner is perfect as Amy’s caustic mother, her Oscar-worthy monologues reminding us where Gwyneth Paltrow got her acting genes.
New Zealander Melanie Lynskey made her remarkable film debut some two decades ago in Peter Jackson’s “Heavenly Creatures.” You may recognize her as Rose the Stalker on TV’s “Two and a Half Men.” You’ve also seen her recently as Aunt Helen in “The Perks of Being a Wallflower.”
Chris Abbott played Max in “Martha Marcy May Marlene” and has been a regular on TV’s “Girls.” He’s actually 26 years old, but nicely passes as 19 for “Hello, I Must Be Going.”
Melanie Lynskey says, “It was important to me that it wasn’t all about the age difference in a creepy way, and Chris has a maturity to him which I think is important. The characters are at such similar points in their lives. ‘Who am I, and what am I going to do with the rest of my life?’ So I didn’t want it to be sketchy. They cast Chris and I was in Connecticut working with director Todd Luiso and screenwriter Sarah Koskoff and we sort of just awkwardly met each other. He had to leave to go shoot something and they were like, ‘He’s cute, right? Did you like him?’ It was like a weird set-up.”
She gushes on about her young co-star. “There’s something about him that’s open and accessible but still mysterious. He’s such a great person, a sweet, sweet person. Kind and lovely – I got so lucky with him.”
“Hello, I Must Be Going” is currently playing at the Tropic Cinema.
Melanie Lynskey hopes you’ll like it. “I’m just nervous now. I want it to be in theaters for a while! But I’m so anxious about it.”
Yes, actors can be insecure too.
 “Hello, I Must Be Going” premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. “At Sundance, when I saw that a particular person had reviewed it, I would be so afraid!” says the star. “I read every single review, because I love film criticism and I’m interested. Some of them I can read and go, eh, I don’t really care about you, I don’t think you’re that great. But there are some people where I’m like, I will jump off a building if you don’t like it.”
Melanie Lynskey once said, “I don’t think I'll ever be a movie star...” She modestly adds, “You always see those movies that have amazing casts, and it’s funny to be in one of them. It’s a list of all these fantastic people – and, oh, me as well.”
Turns out, her original ambition was to become a film critic. So I hope she’ll agree with my professional assessment that this little indie film once again proves her wrong. She’s a very fine movie star.

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