Small Apartments - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Small Apartments Reviews

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Super Reviewer
½ April 11, 2017
I don't usually review movies after I finish watching them unless it's one of two cases. One of those cases is that the movie is so awful that I have to write the review almost immediately after the fact to cleanse myself of the awfulness. Another one of those cases would have to be when I loved a movie so much that I want to rave about it to no end and, hopefully, convince a couple of people to give the flick in question a shot. Don't get me wrong, this movie wouldn't fit into any two of those cases, but if I had reviewed the movie right after finishing it, I would have given this movie three stars. I came out of this movie with a relatively positive reception towards it. I wouldn't have said that it was great or anything of the sort, because it's not a great movie, but there was enough of it that I enjoyed that I felt comfortable giving it that rating. But now, almost a day after finishing the movie, I'm realizing that this flick, while having exactly the same flaws as I did when I finished watching it, isn't as good as I had first thought. Again, there's nothing different, I didn't gain any new insights. I just saw the movie for what it was, a slightly above average movie, that doesn't really have an actual story to speak of. I suppose there's the basic gist of Franklin Franklin (yes, that's his first and last name) having the corpse of his landlord in his kitchen and his attempts to dispose of it. But that doesn't really even carry the movie, since that's, realistically speaking, not even a major part of the narrative. It plays a part of it, for sure, but it's just used as a plot device really. It's just a way to move what little narrative this film has forward. I think the film is much more about Franklin's relationship with his brother, Bernard, who voluntarily checked himself in to a psych ward after a mental breakdown. He suffered a mental breakdown as a result of reading this series of books from a self-help author who's helping you train your brain to be 'physically fit'. Bernard read this series of books and it never really had the answer to his problem, so he lost it. It turns out, however, that Bernard was not 'crazy', he just had a brain tumor (that he died from) the size of a racquetball. This is what was causing him the headaches and is what led him to believe that his brain was physically unfit enough that he felt the self-help books were his best option. You really don't even get to see Franklin and Bernard together that much, and even then it's only through flashbacks, but their relationship is the strongest part of the movie, I felt. I think it highlights the lengths one person will go to protect their sibling and how far they'd go to making sure they can get out of the shitty situation they're in. But the problem with this movie is that, instead of focusing on that for the majority of it, they're distracted with several of the other eccentric neighbors and their own little stories. There's not a problem with that if the film was meant to be sort like a Crash type, where several different characters and their stories converge together. But the movie isn't that way. Tommy's fate (or Mr. Allspice's) don't really play any part into any of the major proceedings in Franklin's life. Though it does lead to one of the funnier recurring jokes. Burt, Billy Crystal's character, informs people of their death by fire or suicide or whatever. The person usually reacts by asking 'are they ok?' before Burt replies, as calmly as possible, 'no, they're dead'. It sounds silly typing it out this way, but it actually works in the film. The characters are certainly weird and I think they were purposely weird, to add a bit of flavor to the film. And I get that, but it's a bit forceful. Like they're weird just to add a quirkier aspect to the film. I wouldn't have a problem with this approach if the film benefited from it or if it actually made sense within the context. I guess there's worse movies, because a seedy LA apartment? You bet your ass there's gonna be some strange folk in those apartments. I still just felt that the characters' weirdness was a little forceful. I suppose it was better than the alternative of actually writing good characters. That probably sounds harsher than I meant it to be. Generally, I liked the film's characters, but there's no denying that they could have been better written. The cast is quite strong, so no complaints on that front whatsoever. The dialogue is decent, but again, the narrative could have been far more focused. It's just an above average movie. I can't exactly recommend it, but this isn't bad in the slightest. It just misses the mark a bit. Could have been worse, but there's better movies out there that deserve your time.
½ November 1, 2016
Not quite a 5 out of 5 but very close. This movie uses it's 1 hr 35 very well with the story continually developing throughout and keeping you guessing.

With other movies there are clear flag points of the plot in which you know how the next half an hour of the plot is going to be focused. However with this plot it just consistently reveals itself bit by bit. There are some very dark themes explored in this movie including some of the lowest forms of human behaviour. It's gross at times but is actually quite real because we all have things we are ashamed of behind closed doors. It also explores themes of human insanity. Where that line ends and should society ultimately judge who is insane and who isn't?

The characters are all brilliant and all acted very well. *Spoiler* This movie has a happy ending despite it's dark themes and provides a feel good sense for the human spirit. It is a totally unique piece of cinema.
½ August 30, 2016
Not nearly as bad as people seem to say.
July 6, 2016
This is one of my favorite quirky films. It somehow portrays the ugly, dirty, and downright gross in such a beautiful way. I love the cast and the characters they portray are so likeable and real. I laughed, I cried, and I was left feeling happy and hopeful.
January 9, 2015
This movie is amazing! What is wrong with everyone...? It's funny, sad, quirky, brilliantly cast and written.
September 28, 2014
LAUGH OUT LOUD. HILARIOUS. OFFBEAT. STRANGE. CREEPY. MELANCHOLY. Just the weird type of unexpected that gets my interest.
A bunch of great acting talent.
Probably too weird for the common crowd.
September 24, 2014
From the director of "Spun", and just as wacked. With an abundance of style, maddening editing, and a monsterous cast, it loses a bit of plot over the wacky structure. But screw it, it's a novelty film.
September 20, 2014
Very good movie must see life lessons running thru it all
September 9, 2014
A black comedy with a great cast but short on any laughs.
½ September 5, 2014
Oh my god. I loved the dark humor of this flick, that go alongside the 'did I just see that moments'. The first hour was a masterpiece, it had all the makings of a cult classic. The last 30ish minutes trailed off in my opinion. Nonetheless, highly recommended by me, although definitely not for most people (F'ing strange movie... LOL).
July 22, 2014
Weird and oddly depressing...
July 20, 2014
Captivatingly weird and wonderful
½ June 30, 2014
So weird and awesome.
½ June 16, 2014
Never again will I waste valuable minuets of my life watching this.
June 10, 2014
Its an odd movie that has really funny moments
April 20, 2014
Strangely tender but funny.
April 20, 2014
Strangely tender but funny.
March 21, 2014
Strange, quirky, clever. I liked it! The actors made it better than it could've been, and Aklund's music video pedigree works well for this kind of movie.
½ March 17, 2014
Great cast, great character actors, just a little dull at times, and not as quirky as the director thought. Really great attempt at a very weird comedy, but just short of hysterical or memorably weird. I enjoyed viewing it and loved to see those actors together. Worth a view but not fantastic
½ February 28, 2014
A cst full of lovably eccentric nuts, along with a surprisingly restrained Billy Crystal in one of his best roles. The movie looks like a comedic character study, but is actually a surprisingly touching one, with the comedy being gently pushed to the side in such a way that you don't realize it's happening and don't even miss it when it's gone..
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