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Film Studies 101
Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
15
Cast
Matthew McConaughey
Alan Arkin
John Turturro
Amy Irving.
Directors
Jill Sprecher.
Screenwriters
Running Time
104 minutes

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13 Conversations About One Thing
Jill Sprecher's vignette format follows the P T Anderson model, with less success.


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Plot
A series of vignettes exploring a randomly violent, seeming unjust world, among which we follow a lawyer guilty of hit and run defending a mugger guilty of murder.


Review
Insurance manager Alan Arkin is annoyed by a cheerful subordinate and fires him when ordered to cut costs. Attorney Matthew McConaughey lands a case against a mugger who's killed a victim, but runs over a girl (Clea DuVall) and drives off without helping. Maths prof John Turturro is so wrapped up in his own problems, he ignores a suicidal student.

All these stories eventually shuffle together and the dialogue is mostly about whether it's possible to be happy in such a randomly nasty world. Writer-director Jill Sprecher doesn't have the deftness or sad humour that P. T. Anderson uses in his similarly contrived group portraits, but the cast are, at least, individually fine.


Verdict
A series of anecdotes which don't quite add up to profundity.


Reviewed by Kim Newman

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