Landline (Robespierre, 2017)

One thing that annoyed me was how constantly this was trying to remind you that it’s set in the 1990s. Instead of trying to be subtle, the film takes the “Let’s shoehorn specific pop culture references into random bits of dialogue every so often, even when it doesn’t feel natural” approach. It wasn’t needed, to put it mildly. Mostly everything else is quite good. Gillian Robespierre doesn’t tackle infidelity in the fresh way she did abortion in Obvious Child, but her method is still very grounded and adroit. Jenny Slate continues to do her proud, and honestly, she can keep casting her as her lead, and I’d never tire of it. Slate is one of those actresses who can mine gold out of every scenario, including the ones presented here. Abby Quinn and Edie Falco are just as wonderful.

If this had been less predictable, I think it would’ve gotten more attention than it has. That doesn’t mean it’s worth forgetting. Far from.

Star_rating_3.5_of_5

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