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Home Again


Stars: Reese Witherspoon, Pico Alexander, Nat Wolff, Jon Rudnitsky, Michael Sheen, Candice Bergen, Lake Bell, Reid Scott, Lola Flanery, Eden Grace Redfield, Dolly Wells, Jen Kirkman

Director: Hallie Meyers-Shyer

In Hollywood, 'The son also rises' is something of a cliché given the frequency of carefully calculated family fortunes in Tinsel Town.

And now, 'The daughter also rises' with Hailie Meyers-Shyer's debut here as writer-director of this all-too-formulaic romcom. Her father is producer Charlie Shyer (Private Benjamin, The Parent Trap, Alfie) and her mother writer/director Nancy Meyers (The Parent Trap, What Women Want, Father of the Bride).

Here, while competently-enough executed on both sides of the camera, Home Again comes across most effectively as an intended pilot for a television series whose key characters would be the trio of wannabe showbiz employees who end up as Witherspoon's unlikely 'guests'.

Alice (WItherspoon), whose father was a celebrated Hollywood director and her mother, Bergen, one of his stars) returns to her Los Angeles home after breaking up with husband Sheen, snd goes on a mild bender one evening where, under the influence of alcohol (and the screenplay) she meets a trio of young brothers - aspirant actor Wolff, would-be screenwriter Rudnitsky and handsome Alexander who have come to Tinsel Town to seek fame and fortune.

What they first find is the perfect base when she lets them move rent-free into her Hollywood home - and predictable comic shenanigans, equally predictable bonding and, of course, the obvious happy ending arrive on cue, catalysed in part by Sheen's arrival in Los Angeles hoping to repair his marriage...

Encouraged by Bergen ('Be a patron of the arts - it's good for the soul!') into having an affair with tenant Alexander, Witherspoon handles her leading role well enough but without ever overcoming the collection of cliché contained in her blithe but essentially shallow screenplay. Sheen sports a beard and an English accent, and everyone does what is required of them to deliver a light-hearted, inoffensive but eminently forgettable show,

Alan Frank

USA 2017. UK Distributor: STX International. Colour.
97 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: 12A.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 1, Swearing 1.

Review date: 01 Oct 2017