IT’S HER LAST BEST CHANCE… IS SHE GOING TO TAKE IT?
Discount store clerk Justine Last (Jennifer Aniston) is in a rut; she’s married to pot-smoking painter Phil (John C. Reilly), but is attracted to a depressed colleague of hers (Jake Gyllenhaal). A low-budget look at working-class people, Aniston’s character in particular, and the attempts to make something out of their unfulfilling lives; if something resembling true love shows up, aren’t we supposed to go after it? It may sound uncomplicated, but the relationships that Justine has with her hubby and her lover become anything but simple. Not really uplifting but not phony either; this is a realistically bleak (but occasionally absurd and humorous) drama with excellent performances.
2002-U.S. 93 min. Color. Produced by Matthew Greenfield. Directed by Miguel Arteta. Screenplay: Mike White. Cast: Jennifer Aniston (Justine Last), Jake Gyllenhaal (Tom “Holden” Worther), John C. Reilly (Phil Last), Zooey Deschanel, Tim Blake Nelson, Mike White.
Last word: “We thought it would be mischievous and fun for [Aniston] to play an immoral character. Thankfully, after eight years of doing ‘Friends’ she was up for something different. Upfront I said the budget doesn’t allow for comfort, make-up, and hair assistants. She said, ‘Stop right there! I’m completely happy with that!’ I’m proud of her, she worked hard. She wore wrist and ankle weights every day for three weeks to teach her body to slump as the character would.” (Arteta, BBC)