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above:  Kerry Bishé and Joel McHale in Happily (2021)

In the Dark

Till Death Do Us Part


Directed and written by BenDavid Grabinski ◆ Produced by Common Wall Media ◆ Distributed by Saban Films

The Father

Directed and written by Florian Zeller ◆ Produced by Film4 ◆ Distributed by Sony Pictures Classics

Goodbye Again (1961)

Directed and produced by Anatole Litvak ◆ Written by Samuel A. Taylor ◆ Distributed by United Artists


Two of the three films I’m covering this monthHappily and The Father—could be considered companion pieces designed to illustrate life’s extremes. On the one hand, the bliss of a youthful married couple, on the other, the descent into madness of an elderly widower.

In Happily, Tom (Joel McHale) and Janet (Kerry Bishé) are a young husband and wife who have earned the displeasure of their friends by being wondrously happy together. At a time when extramarital dalliances seem the rule rather than the exception, these two are an affront to the established norm of advanced coupledom. They’re utterly faithful to one another and enjoy sex with each other frequently. They even go so far as to display their affection at dinner parties and other gatherings.

Eventually, enough is enough. The state sends an official snoop tasked with correcting defects among the citizenry....

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