Indie Gems: Happiness

Because "Sexually confused" isn't PC title.

So this is an interesting film to write about. It falls under the category of "Excellent Movies I Never Want to See Again." 

Happiness is about a group of people trying to achieve just that. There's Joy (Jane Adams) who's trying to find herself after a string of bad break ups. She has two sisters; Helen, (Lara Flynn Boyle) a cold woman being prank called by her lustful neighbor, Allen. (Phillip Seymour Hoffman) And Trish (Cynthia Stevenson) who tells herself she has the perfect family, yet her husband Bill (Dylan Baker) is secretly a pedophile. 

If this movie is anything, it's very ballsy. Particularly for Dylan Baker's character. Putting a pedophile at the center of the film is tricky, but the film never sympathizes with him. Not once. Baker, Hoffman, and Adams are the stand outs here. This film is filled with interesting characters, even though none of them are actually very likable.

If I had one complaint about the film, it's that the final scene was a little too much for me. Otherwise this is an intense character study that begs to be scene, even if you will only lay eyes on it once.

Grade: B

Memorable Quote: "I'm not laughing at you, I'm laughing with you." - Helen (Lara Flynn Boyle)


  1. I haven't seen this film in years. It's fucking creepy as hell. I'm not sure if I want to see it ever again. "I'm champagne and you're shit".

    I don't like IFC for the fact that it shows too many commercials. I tuned out of that channel. The same with the Sundance Channel.

    1. The amount of commercials on IFC pisses me off. I recently got that channel back for the first time in a few years and I swear they didn't even have them anymore.

  2. I love this movie. Todd Solondz is an often misunderstood genius poking at taboos as if they aren't even such. Philip Seymour Hoffman (God rest his soul) is the best part of this one. Good review! And I agree. Will probably never watch it again. However, I laughed out loud at the last scene and found it brilliant.

  3. Damn, Brittani. That last paragraph totally sold me.

    And scared me.

    What could this final scene possibly be? The intrigue is maddening.

    1. Like...ugh I'd feel uncomfortable just typing it. The last 15 mins or so of this movie are tough.

  4. Despite the terrific cast, I don't think I want to see this movie. Great post!

  5. Yeah, the film is a tough watch, but it has some great performances. Hoffman is actually my Best Supporting Actor winner that year.

  6. Nice review here. That final scene is completely insane, but I still really appreciate this film. It's just so damn... off.


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