Payne, incapable of delivering something that doesn’t work on all sorts of emotional and intellectual levels, continues his streak here. It’s probably his best other than Sideways, and, like that film, manages to sneak in its universal themes in a strange setting. (Swap out wine snobs for Hawaiian real estate.) Reminded me a bit of Broken Flowers, too. It’ll probably get nominated for Best Picture and I have a hunch it’ll be my favorite of the bunch – and no doubt lose.
Jordan Hoffman is a New York-based writer and film critic working for The Guardian, Vanity Fair, Thrillist, Times of Israel, NY Daily News and elsewhere.
He is the host of ENGAGE: The Official Star Trek Podcast, a member of the New York Film Critics Circle and challenges you to a game of backgammon.