Finding poignant humor in derailed life circumstances appears to be actor-turned-director Thomas McCarthy’s specialty. The director, who’s responsible for the top-notch humane dramedies The Station Agent and The Visitor, doesn’t offer cloying plotlines that mush up your cotton hearts and brow-beat you to death; rather, McCarthy has a knack for handling serious subject matter without dropping the pretentious hammer. His latest, Win Win, introduces humor into the mix, and it looks great. Who else better than Paul Giamatti (Sideways, Cinderella Man) to take on the role of a dispirited attorney with family and job issues? The multifaceted actor is joined by a strong ensemble cast—Amy Ryan, Bobby Cannavale, Jeffrey Tambor, Burt Young—to help better mold a troublesome teenage boy’s existence, while piecing their own life puzzles in order. Win Win, which opens on March 18, premiered at this year’s Sundance Film Festival to favorable reviews. We can see why.
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