How it’s New York: The film played at the Tribeca Film Festival, a festival designed to get New Yorkers back downtown after 9/11. Russell Harbaugh is a New York director.
How it’s Irish: Features Irish Actor and Comedian Chris O’Dowd as Nicholas in slice of life drama by Russell Harbaugh.
“Love after Love” at Tribeca just received
- Best Cinematography in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film – Cinematography by Chris Teague forLove After Love. The award was given by Alex Orlovsky
Usually walking into a movie starring Chris O’Dowd I would expect a laugh-fest, and that was not at all what I encountered with Love After Love this week at Tribeca. This piece is definitely a more serious and sometimes somber look at the ways that life, love and loss affect us all. The story from
director Russell Harbaugh and writer Eric Mendelsohn wends its way through the struggles and emotional chasms of loss and finding love again.
In the lead role of the womanizing and high-strung Nicholas, O’Dowd is miles away from his usual hilarious persona, and gives a riveting look into what makes this guy come unhinged.
The story centers on Suzanne (Andie MacDowell) and her two sons Chris (James Adomian) and Nicholas (Chris O’Dowd) who are coping with the loss of their husband/father. Director Harbaugh dives right in, giving us a cacophonous family gathering, which is the prologue to the drama to come, being the collective last good memory that the family will share. MacDowell is gorgeous and fragile as she navigates her way as Suzanne pulling her life together after the loss of her husband, trying to keep her two boys on the right track, while their emotions explode. Juliet Rylance and Dree Hemingway play love interests for Nicholas.
Adomian as Chris is the bumbling drunken comic relief, and O’Dowd’s Nicholas keeps digging himself a deeper and deeper hole in which to hide from the love that he doesn’t seem to believe he deserves.
Love does come calling again for Suzanne, and Scott (Seth Barrish) bravely holds her up and holds his own against the two boys dealing with the thought of their father being replaced.
The standout performance is Adomian’s He portrays broodiness, couched in comedic buffoonery. His comedy lends itself most wonderfully in what serves as the epilogue of the film with a true look inside his feelings on the loss of his dad.
There was a talkback following the screening at Tribeca Film Festival with the director and write: the story, apparently, was somewhat autobiographical. It was driven by the loss of Harbaugh’s own father, and his move to New York to become a filmmaker, leaving him floundering at a time in his life when the volume of his feelings became overwhelming. The story was moving, and made this reviewer consider how the passing of my own parents and how much that changed my life.
Overall this is a moving, at times funny, and thought-provoking film.