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" Years of insanity have made you crazy "
— Jack Lemmon, Out to Sea

MRQE Top Critic

The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou

The Life Aquatic becomes more dear and more impressive the more you learn about it —Marty Mapes (DVD review...)

Murray lives the Life Aquatic

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Director Todd Solondz knows exactly how to make a scene extremely uncomfortable. He’ll hold on a social impoliteness just a little too long, or have a character say something a little too honest at just the wrong moment. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that the subject of the film is sex — one character is a pedophile, one makes harassing phone calls, and the most sexually “normal” characters are messed up in the head. But as painful as the film is to watch, it is a masterful creation. An troupe of hard-to-embarrass actors gives one of the best ensemble performances of 1998. Solondz (whose debut Welcome to the Dollhouse was also quite good) proves he’s a talented director, even if he uses his talents to make you squirm. Solondz manages to weave together four or five story lines into a coherent, complete plot. Happiness is not for the sexually squeamish, but if you’re up for it, it’s a very well made movie and worth the rent.