"People Place Things" is a new romantic comedy set in New York City, starring Jemaine Clement as a newly single dad going through some uncomfortable life changes. Time Warner Cable News’ Neil Rosen filed the following review.
Clement plays Will Henry, a cartoonist, art teacher and father of twin 5-year-old girls. Will's life comes crashing down when at his kids' birthday party, he accidentally walks in on his longtime girlfriend, who's also the mother of his children, having sex with another man. Their relationship ends and Will is miserable. He does spend time with his kids, but when he's not with them he just mopes around a lot.
One of his art students wants to fix him up with her mom, played by Regina Hall. Will reluctantly agrees and the dynamic of that complicated relationship, like the entire film, is mined for low-key comedy and light drama. Written and directed by James Strouse, it's a witty, heartfelt and engaging film that's elevated by the performances.
Clement, from "Flight of the Conchords" and the winning comedy "What We Do In The Shadows," is given an opportunity to shine here. His finely nuanced portrait of Will is so low-key and winning, you can't help but root for this sad sack, awkward guy who's trying to get by.
Jessica Williams, as the matchmaking student, is quite good too, and Regina Hall is excellent as a woman who has also had her fair share of awful relationships. In fact, some of the nice little moments in this movie might not have worked at all and may have come off like a mediocre sitcom, if it were not for this fine cast.
There is nice use of New York City locales, plus cartoon panels that Will creates are interspersed throughout the film and many of them are quite clever.
It's a sweet little comedy that's currently playing in theatres and it's also available On Demand.
Neil Rosen’s Big Apple Rating: