Jeff, Who Lives at Home Searches for Meaning
- Friday, March 16, 2012
DVD Release Date: June 19, 2012
Theatrical Release Date: March 16, 2012
Rating: R (for language including sexual references and some drug use)
Run Time: 83 min.
Directors: Jay Duplass, Mark Duplass
Actors: Jason Segel, Ed Helms, Susan Sarandon, Judy Greer, Rae Dawn Chong, Steve Zissis, Evan Ross, Benjamin Brant Bickham, Tim J. Smith
Whether it was the good-hearted doofus played by Paul Rudd in Our Idiot Brother, the forty-somethings who can’t wait to take a week off from marriage so they can re-live their adolescent fantasies in Hall Pass or pretty much any role Adam Sandler signs up for, modern cinema is chock full of men in various states of arrested development.
Now with Jeff, Who Lives at Home, we’re introduced to yet another man with a perpetual case of Peter Pan syndrome. Now 30 years old and still living in his mother’s basement, Jeff (Jason Segel, The Muppets) spends the bulk of his day smoking weed and looking for hidden truths in what’s apparently his favorite movie, Signs.
A strong believer that nothing in life is ever coincidental, he’s in constant pursuit of his life’s greater meaning. Unfortunately, since Jeff rarely leaves the cozy confines of home or the hazy state that comes with smoking copious amounts of a mind-altering substance, his search for grand cosmic significance is a bit misguided to say the least.
Meanwhile, Jeff’s mom, Sharon (Susan Sarandon, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps), who spends the bulk of her lonely existence in a cubical, just wishes he’d do something, anything, but lounge around. Frustrated by his sheer lack of motivation, she gives him an ultimatum—either go to Home Depot and pick up some glue to fix the broken piece of wood on the kitchen cabinet or find a new place to live.
While Jeff doesn’t seem particularly phased by the urgency of her demand, what he is excited about is finding how the name “Kevin” plays into his personal narrative. See, before his Mom got in touch, a random guy named Kevin called, so naturally, Jeff thinks “Kevin” is a super-important sign of some sort.
Giving further credence to his wackadoodle theory, there’s actually a guy on the bus with “Kevin” sewn on the back of his sports jersey. For most people, a random occurrence like this would be nothing more than an amusing little fluke, but Jeff just “knows” he has to follow this guy wherever he’s going. And while this turn of events eventually leads to Jeff getting beaten up and robbed when a seemingly innocent invitation from Kevin to smoke pot turns ugly, Jeff eventually ends up bumping into his brother, Pat (Ed Helms, TV’s The Office).
Pat isn’t exactly having the best day himself because his wife, Linda (Judy Greer, The Descendants), wasn’t particularly thrilled with his recent purchase—a Porsche they can’t afford. A little lacking in the responsibility department himself, Pat’s marriage is on the rocks, not that he’s all that worried about it. Instead of moving toward a more settled state of affairs that involves home ownership and children, something they’d apparently been talking about for a while now, Pat buys the Porsche despite Linda’s severe reservations.
Employing the whole “do it and ask forgiveness later” strategy by breaking the news to her over a “romantic” breakfast of toaster waffles and bacon, Linda naturally sees right through the “gesture” and walks out, but not before squeezing ketchup and hurling garbage on his new car.
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