We Don’t Live Here Anymore


We Don’t Live Here Anymore boasts a heavenly cast. Naomi Watts and Mark Ruffalo are pretty much a given these days – they seem to be working constantly. Then we have Peter Krause (barely seen outside TV’s ‘Six Feet Under’) and good ol’ Laura Dern who hasn’t been too busy of late. It’s a great collection of strong actors, but unfortunately the film itself is quite a let down, setting up an interesting premise but failing to ever get out of first gear.

We Don't Live Here AnymoreJohn Curran’s film is very much an ensemble piece – all four actors share the screen equally, and even when we’re in the middle of dialogue between half the cast we will get a momentary glimpse at what the other two are up to. This balancing of screen time works wonderfully, as the lives of Jack, Terry, Hank and Edith are so completely intertwined that to ignore one for long would have been awkward.

Watts, Ruffalo, Dern and Krause give it their all, but there’s not much here really. When a friend expressed interest in seeing this film I asked what it was about. ‘Infidelity’ was the one word response… and that’s pretty much it. From Hank’s complacency to Terry’s wafer thin bravado we see varying responses to this very complex situation, however the resolution is fairly unsatisfying and we’re not left with anything to ponder.

As a moment in time, I suppose We Don’t Live Here Anymore does a good job – but this film has very little in the way of dramatic peaks and troughs, rather just sauntering along at the same steady pace. There was one moment where the musical score took over and provided an almost feverish tone in one montage, but that was about it.

Perhaps some more hints of their lives outside of marriage would have filled the narrative out slightly. The narrow focus of the film works to its disadvantage rather than as a benefit – there’s simply not enough for the 111 minute running time.

Rating: 2.5 stars
Review by Stuart Wilson, 15th June 2005
Hoopla Factor: 2.0 stars

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