Release date: June 15, 2012
Written and directed by: Lynn Shelton
Cast: Emily Blunt, Rosemarie DeWitt, Mark Duplass, Mike Birbiglia
Running Time: 90 minutes
Films that are a combination of script and improv can often be deadly rambles, the actors blathering on, the scenes shapeless. Yet somehow writer/director Lynn Shelton has figured out a methodology that blends the confessional, natural tone of improvisation with sharply delineated characters speaking smart, well-timed dialogue in scenes that have both tension and rhythm. In this, her fourth film, Shelton cast the veteran actresses Emily Blunt and Rosemarie DeWitt to work with celebrated indie actor/writer/director Mark Duplass (co-writer/director of Jeff, Who Lives at Home, also starring in the recent Safety Not Guaranteed and Shelton’s earlier Humpday) … and the results are wonderful.
Your Sister’s Sister opens on the one-year memorial for the deceased brother of Duplass’ Jack. Jack is still grieving over the loss of his sibling, and his inappropriate reactions at the memorial cause his best friend Iris (Blunt) to suggest that he spend some reflective time at her family’s mountain cabin in the San Juan Islands in northern Washington. But when he arrives, he discovers that Iris’ sister Hannah (DeWitt) has come to the cabin as well, to work out some issues of her own. Between Hannah’s recent decision to walk out on her seven-year lesbian relationship, and Jack’s need to process his grief, they turn into drinking buddies for the night. After one too many shots of tequila, they end up in bed together. Which wouldn’t be so terrible if it weren’t for the fact that Iris, who was Jack’s brother’s girlfriend and is secretly in love with Jack, shows up to surprise Jack the following morning. And this is where we say: Complications ensue.
[For the full review and Kimberly Gadette's rating, please click here]