'The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)': Film Review | Cannes 2017

Oy, you think you've got problems.

Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller, Dustin Hoffman and Emma Thompson star in Noah Baumbach's latest comedy of New York family dysfunction.

Neuroses flow thicker than blood through the veins of the clan under analysis in The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected), Noah Baumbach’s rambling, often stingingly amusing look at messy accounts being settled within a disorderly family. Working firmly within the tradition of New York Jewish humor distinctively mined by the likes of Woody Allen, Neil Simon, Carl Reiner, Herb Gardner, Elaine May and so many others, Baumbach’s film for Netflix is more conventionally conceived than some of his best work but benefits from sterling turns from a wonderful cast, most notably Dustin Hoffman and, no kidding, Adam Sandler.

Screwed-up families have always served as writers’ most common grist for the mill since the Greeks, so if you’re going to mine that load you’d better be pretty good. And that’s more or less where Baumbach’s new effort rates. At first, it looks like it could possibly be even better than that, as the early stretch is dominated by the piece’s most compelling character, Harold Meyerowitz (Hoffman), a cranky, quick-witted, thickly gray-bearded sculptor with a permanent chip on his shoulder over not being viewed as the towering genius he firmly believes himself to be.

Production: Netflix
Cast: Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller, Dustin Hoffman, Emma Thompson, Elizabeth Marvel, Grace Van Patten, Candice Bergen, Adam Driver, Judd Hirsch, Rebecca Miller, Matthew Shear
Director-screenwriter: Noah Baumbach
Producers: Scott Rudin, Noah Baumbach, Lila Yacoub, Eli Bush
Director of photography: Robbie Ryan
Production designer: Gerald Sullivan
Costume designer: Joseph G. Aulisi
Editor: Jennifer Lame
Music: Randy Newman
Casting: Douglas Aibel, Francine Maisler
Venue: Cannes Film Festival (Competition)

110 minutes