Landline (2017)

It’s particularly relevant that this mid-level indie is set in the 1990s, because it’s exactly the type of the New York-based independent movie that could easily have starred Parker Posey or Christina Ricci during the era. Luckily, director Gillian Robespierre is blessed with an extraordinarily talented cast that brings the rather thin story to life, in particular lead Jenny Slate. Slate, reuniting with Robespierre after 2014’s excellent “Obvious Child” delivers a natural, charming and emotionally resonant performance, walking a tight balance between flippancy and insight without betraying her character, and she’s a delight to watch every step of the way. Edie Falco and John Turturro also deliver strong performances as her distracted parents, while Abby Quinn and Jay Duplass each have a number of standout moments. Overall it’s an extremely well-acted little slice of life that has a lot to say about the nature of relationships, either parental or romantic, and it’s a pleasure to see so many talented performers together in one project.

Rating: ★★★ (out of 5)

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