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BRAD’S STATUS

BRAD’S STATUS

MIKE WHITE · USA · 2017 · 102 mins · PG
IMDBMetaCriticRotten Tomatoes

Ben Stiller plays a father accompanying his son on college tours, as regrets, ruminations and reflections on where he went wrong in life bubble to the surface. What a downer. But “Brad’s Status” is anything but. Written and directed by Mike White, it contains moments of delicate humor, as Brad toggles between humiliation at not having achieved the material success he now craves, and pride at having stuck to his values and created a happy family life. He lives with his wife (Jenna Fischer) and their son, Troy (Austin Abrams), a gifted musician who has been told he’ll have no trouble getting into Yale. But Troy, flawlessly played in a revelatory performance by Abrams, wants to study at Harvard.

As he did in his screenplay for “Beatriz at Dinner,” White manages to skewer contemporary poses and anxieties.

 Stiller’s hyper-self-aware character finally turns a kind of corner, successfully navigating into the safe harbor of right now. “Be present,” his wife calls as he and his son embark on their journey. She makes it sound so easy. --Washington Post

A funny, empathetic and surprisingly grounded comedy that itself defies obvious comparisons. Los Angeles Times
Offers usefully excruciating insights into the wild swings between hubris and self-laceration that fuel our daily efforts to solidify a coherent self. NPR
Cast Jenna Fischer, Ben Stiller, Austin Abrams
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