While We're Young

While We're Young ★★★½

While We're Young is a mess, but upon reflection I feel like it had to be one. The movie initially presents itself as a mishmash of "Losing My Edge" and a handful of Portlandia sketches, which is fodder for some too easy (albeit hearty) laughs (amidst some really unfunny moments), but there's too much on its mind to commit to that. Even in cornball moments (such as the epilogue), there is a subtext that cuts through. The ironic punchline of the subplot that derails the focus of the film (and slides into some clumsy farce) ends up being totally worthwhile in the end. The film is critical but not contemptuous. Noah Baumbach offers a conflicted view of his themes and a reluctant cynicism that is refreshing.

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