John (John C. Reilly) is a sad sack who has been hoping to reconcile with his wife ever since she dumped him a half-dozen years ago. But Jamie's (Catherine Keener) announcement that she's about to marry Tim (Matt Walsh) sends the socially-awkward loser into a tailspin that leaves him as lonely and depressed as ever. So, half out of pity, half hoping he might meet finally someone new, she invites John to a party where he proceeds to drive away ever woman he meets because of his transparent display of emotional neediness.
Then, while relieving himself into a plant instead of a toilet, he is observed by Molly (Marisa Tomei), a fellow reveler who doesn't hide her admiration for his ample endowment. Next, the strangers escape to his place to share what at first blush looks like just a lusty one-night stand, given the way she slips out of his apartment before daybreak without saying goodbye.
However, Molly does return for another roll in the hay, though she remains elusive about her personal life which she only describes as "really complicated." Smitten, John decides to do a little detective work by following her home and staking out the premises.
As it turns out, the complication is the fact that Molly's unemployed, 21 year-old son, Cyrus (Jonah Hill), has a bad habit of sabotaging his mom's romantic relationships before they have a chance to blossom. John can see right through the troublemaker, so he and the manipulative momma's boy soon begin to butt heads.
Will Molly wise up and cut her dysfunctional son's umbilical cord? Or will Cyrus be able to manipulate his gullible mother into breaking up with yet another suitor? Superficially, Cyrus' storyline may sound a lot like Step Brothers, which by the way also starred John C. Reilly, except that there he played one of the interfering sons along with Will Ferrell.
But where that knee-slapper relied on silly slapstick to generate laughter, this relatively-sophisticated affair is a thoroughly-engaging dramedy with a droll sense of humor. For the plot is plausible, plus each of the principals proves to be an empathetic figure exhibiting an endearing vulnerability in his or her earnest quest for fulfillment on the road to resolution.
Excellent (4 stars)
Rated R for profanity and sexuality.
Running time: 91 Minutes
Studio: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
DVD Extras: 2 deleted scenes with optional introductions by co-directors Jay and Mark Duplass.
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