Happy Endings (2005)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: Despite strong individual performances, the overlong, disjointed plot of Happy Endings self-indulgently rambles.


Movie Info

Mamie is being blackmailed. This filmmaker named Nick claims to know Mamie's son -- the one she gave up for adoption -- but Nick won't introduce her to him unless he can film the reunion. Enter Javier, Mamie's massage therapist boyfriend, who convinces Nick to film him instead. Now they're all making a movie about massage. Charley has a longtime boyfriend named Gil. Their best friends, Pam and Diane, once tried using Gil as a sperm donor. They said his sperm didn't take, but Charley thinks those … More

Rating: R (for sexual content, language and some drug use)
Genre: Drama , Art House & International , Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: Don Roos
In Theaters:
On DVD: Nov 5, 2005
Box Office: $1.2M
Runtime:
Lions Gate - Official Site

Cast


as Charley

as Mamie at 17

as Charley at 16

as Annette

as Tess's Drunk Husband

as Naked Woman

as Chuck Peppitone

as Steve the Lawyer

as Woman Driver

as Musician #1

as Musician #2

as Musician #3

as Karaoke Guy
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for Happy Endings

All Critics (117) | Top Critics (43)

Intriguing but overlong and indulgent, the work of a writer too in love with his characters.

Full Review… | August 11, 2005
Arizona Republic
Top Critic

Serves as a relaunching pad for the magical talents of Maggie Gyllenhaal as Jude.

Full Review… | August 11, 2005
New York Observer
Top Critic

Roos's movie is so aggressively pleased with itself it leaves you feeling it doesn't even need an audience.

Full Review… | August 5, 2005
Toronto Star
Top Critic

[It] feels like Paul Thomas Anderson's Magnolia for adolescents.

Full Review… | August 5, 2005
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

The drama never feels more than a well-shot TV soap. Worse is Roos' tragic insistence on text inserts to explain every motivation, making the whole thing look like a fatal cross between Queer As Folk and VH1's Pop Up Video.

Full Review… | November 7, 2012
Empire Magazine Australasia

Potent social satire mixes with multiple characters incapable of telling the truth, especially to themselves, in writer/director Don Roos' enjoyable comedy of deception and dysfunction.

Full Review… | April 15, 2009
ColeSmithey.com

Audience Reviews for Happy Endings

movie is so-so

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Anatoliy Dudaev
Anatoliy Dudaev

Super Reviewer

Multiple intersecting stories, including plots about blackmail, stolen sperm, and a woman who fucks a gay drummer and his father, are at the center of this Robert Altman imitation.
By the end of this film, I thought that it had reached the Altman Standard in terms of its ability to cleverly combine these characters with some degree of dramatic effectiveness. I write "dramatic" intentionally because even though the title cards and other sources identify this as a comedy, I saw very little humorous about its situations or delivery. Sure, there are a couple moments that were chuckle-worthy, but that's about it.
In my sentence-summary of the film, I listed the most prominent plots, and if you think I'm being somewhat satirical, you're right. A lot of the critics' reviews of Happy Endings lamented the ludicrousness of its storylines, and from a writer's standpoint, I have to agree. However, good actors can sometimes save bad writing. The way in which each of these actors commit to their characters makes the film almost believable. Of particular note is Lisa Kudrow, with whom I, a long-time Friends hater, have never been impressed. But she scraps her ditsy-girl act, and her damaged character exudes a vulnerability that her other work didn't allow her to explore.
Also, throughout the film we get title cards explaining characters' back-stories, and this strikes me as lazy filmmaking. Instead of deftly showing the information we need, the film inundates the audience with minutiae and sly comments that have little bearing on the film's action.
Overall, though there are some significant issues from a writing perspective, the actors save this piece.

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hunterjt13
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

½

This is a great movie. I first watched it a few years ago, and I couldn't remember a great deal about it, aside from that I enjoyed it. Had a few hours this afternoon, (and I mean that literally, it is over 2 hours long).
This is a black comedy and has a great cast including Maggie Gylenhaal in an early role (probably my favourite character in this. She is not especially likable, but I did like her, she plays the part in such a way that you want to make excuses for her). There's also Lisa Kudrow in sour and bitchy mode, similar to the character she played in The opposite of sex, which I think was the same director, which explains a few things. The two movies definitely have similarities.
I really liked how this movie ran so many different stories together, and how it used text to narrate some of the story. An interesting and well written story.

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romy861
Nicki Marie

Super Reviewer

Happy Endings Quotes

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