A Little Help (2011)
Average Rating: 5.7/10
Reviews Counted: 44
Fresh: 18 | Rotten: 26
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 5.8/10
Critic Reviews: 22
Fresh: 11 | Rotten: 11
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 2.8/5
User Ratings: 4,181
It's a movie for everyone whose life has been thrown off-course, out of whack, or simply not turned out the way they planned it. In other words, it's a movie for everyone, period. Set in suburban Long Island in the summer of 2002, with the psychic wounds of 9/11 still fresh, A Little Help is a story that takes a comic, searching and profoundly empathetic look at a few pivotal months in the life of dental hygienist Laura Pehlke (Jenna Fischer)-an ordinary woman whose life suddenly flies off the
Jul 22, 2011 Limited
Oct 25, 2011
Freestyle Releasing - Official Site
Watch It Now
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The next chapter in Laura's story might be something worth rooting for, but here's hoping she has a different writer penning her lines.
A Little Help doesn't dazzle, and you can pick at its parts, but Fischer's performance gives the movie a sense of romantic weariness that lingers. Life is a series of disasters to be weathered, no matter how cute you are.
The film suffers from an uncertain tone, playing serious situations for laughs while supplying Laura with a drinking habit and a hair-trigger temper that come across as problems rather than endearing foibles.
This is one of the smarter, more honest scripts to be filmed in quite some time. And Jenna Fischer gives one of the smarter, more honest - and vulnerable, and tough - performances by an actress on the big screen in an even longer stretch.
It's not that Jenna Fischer is miscast in "A Little Help.'' It's that she's mis-everything else: misused, misdirected, misanthropic.
"A Little Help" settles for familiar and modest payoffs. It's not much. Yet Fischer clearly relishes the chance to play someone who's a demurely reckless mess.
An odd duck of a period piece dramedy, a wonderfully detailed character-study set on Long Island a year after the 9/11 attacks."
Though the movie can't possibly wrap up all its dramatic threads in any realistic manner, the way it abruptly leaves off is just as dissatisfying.
O'Donnell's character isn't the only relative that we and Fischer's Laura come to resent (although she at least finds opportunities to sneak away for cigarette and beer breaks).
Jenna Fischer shows off her dramatic chops but her downer film is a bit aimless.
For a movie without much on its mind, A Little Help is impressively determined in its downward spiral, with only the minimum uplift to prevent audiences from walking straight out of the theater and into oncoming traffic.
Despite the best efforts by Jenna Fischer playing against type as a smoking, drinking newly-single mother, A Little Help is a mess.
Sweetly cast, but the dramatic material doesn't play and the film overall never quite convincingly locates a singular tone or point of focus that would kick it up and make it recommendation-worthy.
Fischer flexes real-deal acting chops as a woman who's lost control of her life, learning that when parents lie, soon kids lie too.
Audience Reviews for A Little Help
- Laura: You suck!
- Laura Pehlke: Is one of your meetings at the Cherokee Hotel?
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