New at the Movies: Little Men
by Robbie Tucker
With a slow start and stilted early dialogue, it takes a while to warm up to this quiet, thoughtful gentrification story: a tale of strained friendship when the parents of Jake and Tony find themselves in a struggle over Brooklyn real estate.
The stellar cast, including Talia Balsam, Jennifer Ehle and Chilean theater star, Paulina García, all do fine work, though the two young men could have been stronger. (Alfred Molina’s talent is wasted in a tiny, throw-away role.) But it’s the performance of Greg Kinnear, as Jake’s father, that brings soul and credibility to this movie.
Ira Sacks directed and co-wrote with oft-used collaborator, Mauricio Zacharias, most recently Love is Strange, which explains the Molina cameo. As Sacks is known for, Little Men is a provocative, humanitarian glimpse of well-meaning people in unfortunate situations. Just like real life, there are no pat answers here.
About the Reviewer: Robbie Tucker drove a ’55 two-toned Buick Roadmaster in San Francisco, where she started working in film production. She convinced Francis Coppola to let her work on the movie about her namesake, but moved to New York City before shooting began. When she’s not writing her own memoir, or ghost writing someone else’s, you can probably find her at the movies.