Hello I Must Be Going (2012) Directed by Todd Louiso. With Melanie Lynskey, Christopher Abbott, Blythe Danner, John Rubinstein, Sara Chase, Daniel Eric Gold and Dan Futterman.
Todd Louiso’s low key drama about a 30-something woman (Melanie Lynskey), living with her parents while struggling to come to terms with the recent breakdown of her marriage, is a crisp looking, if not slightly tame effort. While there’s nothing outright awful going on, it still suffers from falling into a category of well intentioned, marginally forgettable US independent drama.
The title is a reference to a song featured in the Marx Brothers’ film, Animal Crackers, of which, the central character of Amy (Lynskey) is a fan. Amy has fallen into a state of depression. Her ageing parents treat her with a destabilising contrast of love and disdain. This only contributes to her problems. Then, at a party hosted by her parents, she meets a young man, and things begin to change.
It’s one of those films with a scattering of wistfully beautiful looking shots, accompanied by a single ukulele. It’s like listening to the equivalent of a modern-day singer/songwriter acoustic album, complete with professional production values and cute lyrics, only afterwards, you can’t remember any of the tunes.
The performances are generally good; the stand-outs being Lynskey’s central turn and Blythe Danner as her conflicted mother. Watching Lynskey thaw from her initial reticence is a pleasant enough experience, but not one you’ll be rushing to tell everyone about. That said, there is something understated about her, which amid her privileged home life with her folks, makes her seem refreshingly normal.
Luiso’s film might not tell or show you anything you haven’t seen many times over. Also, it could have done with being a bit funnier, and perhaps a little less predictable. But, it comes from a good place with the ultimate intention of making you feel good. 3/5