Synopsis by Judd Blaise
A wealthy Beverly Hills husband and wife are forced to reevaluate their lives after losing their jobs in writer-director Michael Tolkin's aloof satire. Peter Witner (Peter Weller) and Katherine Witner (Judy Davis) have become so accustomed to their high-class, shallow lifestyle that they feel helpless when circumstances leave them facing imminent bankruptcy. Lost and confused, their marriage on the verge of collapse, they seek help from a number of spiritual gurus, who offer ineffectual New Age philosophies as the solution to their problems. These remedies provide little comfort, however, and the Witners' attempt to make their own way by opening a hip clothing store also disappoints, leaving them ostracized and desperate for a direction in life. Best known for the cutting screenplay of Robert Altman's The Player (1992) and for his own earlier film The Rapture (1991), Tolkin provides sharp dialogue and a well-observed critique of the Los Angeles high life. This film continues the social criticism of those earlier efforts, as Tolkin consistently portrays American life as mindlessly materialistic, spiritually hollow, and bereft of meaningful purpose or moral direction. While some viewers may feel distanced from the unsympathetic characters and detached tone, Tolkin continues to be one of the most trenchant social satirists in contemporary American movies.
bankruptcy, guru, husband-and-wife, neurotic, New-Age, unemployment