The Savages Reviews
It starts on a sarcastic note, with dad Lenny Savage (a great Philip Bosco) behaving badly in sunny Arizona. Lenny is an unpleasant old man, spending his retirement in a senior-only community. When his female companion dies suddenly, we learn that they were not married and that the house belonged to her. The woman's children want Lenny out ASAP, so his two estranged children, Wendy and Jon (equally great Linney and Seymour Hoffman) must come and take him back to the East Coast, where they live.
Also due to their difficult childhood - only hinted at - Wendy and Jon have issues of their own, such as being unable to have healthy, long terms relationships. Wendy is involved in a dispassionate affair with a married man and Jon cannot commit to his long-term Polish girlfriend who must leave the US before being deported. The siblings have a strained relationship of their own, fed on the frustration of having both literary ambitions, but holding mundane jobs.
The movie develops their relationship nicely, as the only metaphorical ray of sunshine in an otherwise frosty and desolate landscape. Despite the abuse they suffered at the hands of Lenny and a mother who just "left", they try to do their best to care for their hostile, demented dad, who does not show a shred of gratitude. The movie has a sort of melancholic humour and even manages to end with a much needed uplifting note. Definitely top-class film-making for discerning audiences.