Living Out Loud

Imagine Ally McBeal some 15 years down the line, career long abandoned for marriage to a handsome doctor in a big money specialty. Now pull the rug out from under her chicly shod feet: The doctor (Martin Donovan) is leaving her for a newer model (Tamlyn Tomita). And there you have Judith (Holly Hunter), a childless waif with a fabulous wardrobe, a Fifth...read more

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Reviewed by Maitland McDonagh
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Imagine Ally McBeal some 15 years down the line, career long abandoned for marriage to a handsome doctor in a big money specialty. Now pull the rug out from under her chicly shod feet: The doctor (Martin Donovan) is leaving her for a

newer model (Tamlyn Tomita). And there you have Judith (Holly Hunter), a childless waif with a fabulous wardrobe, a Fifth Avenue co-op and not a clue as to what to do with her life. Judith tries going back to work as a private duty nurse, attending to a salty old gal with old-fashioned views about

love and marriage. She also sucks down too many martinis, fantasizes about throwing herself from the window (and landing on her ex and his new wife), orders in a hunky masseuse, fantasizes about making new friends wherever she goes, eats triple cheeseburgers that don't add an ounce to her frame,

and takes to frequenting a West Side jazz club, where she actually does befriend earthy torch singer Liz (Queen Latifah). Oh, and she meets troll-like elevator man Pat (Danny DeVito), whose extensive back story -- estranged wife, dead daughter, gambling debts, defeated brother, family bar -- melts

away as soon as it serves its purpose: making Judith feel sorry for Pat so she'll hang out with him. And let's not forget her trip to the everyman's-fantasy lipstick-lesbian disco, where she tries Ecstasy and imagines herself the leader of a pack of MTV-style minxes. Ostensibly an "adult comedy"

about serious things, screenwriter Richard LaGravenese's disjointed directing debut rings profoundly false, a story about class distinctions and suffering conceived and executed in privilege. Hunter's brittle, actor-ish performance makes it doubly difficult to feel sorry for a character suffering

the kind of pampered angst of which most people can only dream.

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  • Released: 1998
  • Rating: R
  • Review: Imagine Ally McBeal some 15 years down the line, career long abandoned for marriage to a handsome doctor in a big money specialty. Now pull the rug out from under her chicly shod feet: The doctor (Martin Donovan) is leaving her for a newer model (Tamlyn T… (more)

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