Andrew Largeman is a moderately successful Hollywood actor who exists
in a state of lithium-induced indifference. One day, he receives
a telephone call from his father, telling him that his mother has
died. Returning to his hometown in New Jersey for the funeral,
Andrew decides to take a break from his medication. And cue the
little insights and pearls of wisdom conveying that ‘the great abyss
that is life is worth living’ from various kooky and not so kooky
characters with which Andrew meets during his visit.
(of ‘Scrubs’ fame) makes an impressive writing and directorial debut
with this pleasant feature. Part romance, part drama, with a
similarly quirky aesthetic and dialogue to that of Scrubs, the movie
never fails to impress. Braff is certainly a writer/director with
an eye for the surreal in the every day.
His performance as
the unfeeling and somewhat bemused Andrew Largeman, who slowly begins
to smile is also first-rate. Natalie Portman also shines as
Braff’s love interest, although her character’s eccentricity seems at
times to be a little put-on. Ian Holm is, as usual, quite
impressively unsettling in his role as Andrew’s father.
State is unlikely to be a film that will change your world.
However, it is a pleasant enough way to while away an evening
(particularly with a loved one) and hints at greater things to come
from Mr. Zach ‘Scrubs’ Braff.