Jeff, Who Lives at Home
|Jeff, Who Lives at Home|
|Directed by||Jay Duplass
|Produced by||Lianne Halfon
|Written by||Jay Duplass
|Music by||Michael Andrews|
|Editing by||Jay Deuby|
|Studio||Right of Way Films
|Distributed by||Paramount Vantage|
|Running time||83 minutes|
Jeff, Who Lives at Home is an American comedy-drama film starring Jason Segel and Ed Helms, written and directed by Jay and Mark Duplass and co-starring Judy Greer and Susan Sarandon. The film premiered on September 14, 2011 at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival and then saw a limited release in USA and Canada on March 16, 2012, after having been pushed back from the original date of March 2. The film received positive reviews from critics, but was a box office failure.
Jeff (Segel) is a 30-year-old unemployed stoner living in his mother Sharon's (Sarandon) basement in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He looks for his destiny in seemingly random occurrences. He finds inspiration in the feature film Signs, which reinforces his belief in this outlook. One day, he answers the telephone; it's a wrong number, from somebody asking for "Kevin," and Jeff contemplates the meaning of this and decides it's a sign. After receiving a call from his irritated mother asking him to go out to buy wood glue in order to fix a door shutter, he leaves the house and boards a bus, where he sees a kid wearing a sports jersey bearing the name Kevin. He follows Kevin (Ross) to a basketball court, where he joins a pick-up game and the two bond. Afterwards, Jeff agrees to smoke weed with Kevin, but discovers he has been tricked when he is beaten and mugged.
He later stumbles by a Hooters restaurant where he crosses path with his older brother Pat (Helms), a successful yuppie struggling with a failing marriage. They quickly notice Pat's wife Linda (Greer) at a gas station across the street with another man. They spend several hours following them, first to a restaurant and later to a hotel, with Pat's Porsche being ticketed, crashed and eventually towed away at various points in the journey. The brothers also stumble across their father's gravesite and fight over their conflicting life philosophies, but Jeff sees a truck reading "Kevin's Candy" and runs off to hitch a ride, only to end up at the same hotel where Pat has found Linda. After some deliberation Jeff offers to break down the door where they find Linda with the man, revealed to be a coworker named Steve (Zassis). Linda quickly ushers Steve out and Jeff waits outside while Linda confronts Pat about his role in their problems. Frustrated, she leaves to stay with her mother, and Jeff and Pat reconcile, with the former conceding that he is struggling to find his destiny in life, while Pat later admits he wants to fall in love with Linda again and for her to do the same with him. Jeff encourages his brother to tell her that, and they hail a taxi to pursue her.
Interspersed within the main story is the story of Sharon, who is at work frustrated with her unfulfilled life dreams and her dissatisfaction with her sons. The doldrum is interrupted when a paper airplane with a beautiful drawing of a flower lands in her cubicle, followed by an anonymous coworker IM messaging her claiming to be a secret admirer. Sharon spends the day trying to deduce the identity of her admirer. She also confides her frustrations to coworker and friend Carol (Chong), revealing that she has not dated since her husband's death, and Carol encourages her to warm up to the attention she is receiving. Sharon is surprised and confused when the admirer turns out to be Carol herself, and though neither believe themselves to be attracted to their own gender, Carol appeals to Sharon's desire to become close with someone who truly understands her. At that moment, a fire alarm goes off and ceiling sprinklers activate; this is an enlightening moment for Sharon who sets off with Carol on a spur of the moment trip to New Orleans.
Jeff, Pat, Linda, Sharon, and Carol all converge on a bridge, where they are stuck in standstill traffic. Pat exits the taxi and runs through the traffic to tell Linda how he feels, passing Carol's car; Sharon sees her son and runs after him, followed by Carol. As Jeff muses to the cab driver about seeking out his destiny only to find it isn't very exciting, he observes a helicopter flying overhead, jumps out of the taxi and also runs through the traffic, passing Pat, who was sharing his feelings with Linda when they were interrupted by the arrival of Sharon and Carol. Jeff continues onward to discover that the cause of the traffic is an accident in which one car plummeted over the side of the bridge. He dives into the water and rescues two children and their father; when Jeff then fails to resurface Pat dives in and rescues him. The group reconciles after the ordeal, and we see Sharon celebrating her birthday and Pat and Linda apparently faring better in their marriage. Jeff sees a news report about his heroics and learns the father's name was Kevin; now with a sense of purpose, he grabs some wood glue and fixes the door shutter.
- Jason Segel as Jeff
- Ed Helms as Pat
- Susan Sarandon as Sharon Thompkins
- Judy Greer as Linda
- Rae Dawn Chong as Carol
- Steve Zissis as Steve
- Evan Ross as Kevin
The film grossed $840,000 in its opening weekend.
The film received generally positive reviews. At Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds a positive "fresh" rating of 78%, based on 127 reviews and an average rating of 6.7/10, with the critical consensus saying, "Sweet, funny, and flawed, Jeff, Who Lives at Home finds the Duplass brothers moving into the mainstream with their signature quirky charm intact". It also has a score of 60 on Metacritic based on 33 reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews".
Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times described Jeff, Who Lives at Home as "a whimsical comedy [that depends] on the warmth of Segel and Sarandon, the discontent of Helms and Greer, and still more warmth that enters at midpoint with Carol (Rae Dawn Chong), Sarandon's co-worker at the office." He concluded that "it's not a Feel Good Movie, more of a Feel Sorta Good Movie." Peter Travers of Rolling Stone writes that the film is "funny, touching, and vital" praising the Duplass brothers by saying that "their films hit you where you live."
- "Jeff Who Lives at Home". Dark Horizons. Retrieved 14 December 2013.
- "Jeff, Who Lives at Home (2012)". Box Office Mojo. Amazon.com. Retrieved June 27, 2012.
- DeFore, John (14 September 2011). "Jeff, Who Lives at Home: Toronto Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
- ‘Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters’ Delays To 2013 So Jeremy Renner More Of Global Draw Deadline.com (January 9, 2012).
- Loeb, Steven (20 October 2011). "Review: 'Jeff, Who Lives at Home' Is an Ambitious Comedy". East Hampton Patch. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
- "Jeff, Who Lives at Home (2012)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved April 30, 2012.
- "Jeff Who Lives at Home". Metacritic. Retrieved April 21, 2012.
- Ebert, Roger (March 14, 2012). "Jeff, Who Lives at Home". Chicago Sun-Times (rogerebert.com). Retrieved June 7, 2012.
- Travers, Peter (March 15, 2012). "Jeff, Who Lives at Home". Rolling Stone. Retrieved June 7, 2012.
- Katz, Josh (May 1, 2012). "Jeff, Who Lives At Home Blu-ray". Blu-ray.com. Retrieved June 7, 2012.
- Official website
- Jeff, Who Lives at Home at the Internet Movie Database
- Jeff, Who Lives at Home at Rotten Tomatoes