Magazine article U.S. Catholic

This Is Where I Leave You

Magazine article U.S. Catholic

This Is Where I Leave You

Article excerpt

THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU

Directed by Shawn Levy (Warner Bros., 2014)

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Following the death of the Altman family's patriarch, his four children travel home to join their mother (Jane Fonda) for the funeral. The graveside service draws the curtain back and gives us our first glimpse into this unique family dynamic. We watch as the youngest brother (Adam Driver) pulls into the cemetery, rap music blaring, and interrupts the service already in progress. Here we see both the exasperation and genuine affection that characterize the films tone. This is not a story about mourning, but instead one of love and family.

After the funeral, it is revealed to the four grown siblings that their father's dying wish was for them to spend seven days together in their childhood home sitting shivah. The week-long traditional Jewish mourning period is unwelcome and somewhat confusing to the nonreligious Altmans, who perceive it as something akin to serving hard time. …

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