Maggie's Plan

"Good"

Maggie's Plan Review


A New York comedy with vivid characters and a contrived plot, this feels rather a lot like a Woody Allen movie. Although writer-director Rebecca Miller keeps it rather cute and silly, avoiding the more pointed issues raised in her script. Still, the snaky, farcical story is very entertaining, and the witty performances from the terrific cast make it well worth a look.

Greta Gerwig plays Maggie, a woman who has given up on finding the perfect man, so she sets out to have a child using a donation from a pickle entrepreneur (Travis Fimmel). Then just after she has the fertilisation procedure, she falls for her fellow professor John (Ethan Hawke), who's looking for a reason to leave his haughty Danish wife Georgette (Julianne Moore). Three years later, Maggie and John are settled down with their toddler daughter. But Maggie is frustrated that John has become aimless, unable to finish his long-in-the-works novel. She's also somehow ended up raising his and Georgette's kids (Mina Sundwall and Jackson Frazer). So she hatches a plan to get Georgette to take him back.

The premise is ingenious, and Miller fills it in with colourful characters and lots of detail, plus several convenient twists and implausible turns of the plot. This keeps the film from ever becoming more than a bit of nutty fluff, but at least it's entertaining fluff. Gerwig and Hawke are superb as self-involved people whose relationship develops in surprisingly resonant ways. Both are sympathetic but not hugely likeable in the way they remain oblivious to everyone around them, and watching them interact is a lot of fun. But the entire film is stolen by Moore in a hilariously spiky turn as the high-maintenance Georgette, who peers imperiously through her riotous array of furs and scarves but can only barely hide the fragile person inside.

Moore packs the performance with so much insight that Georgette becomes the real star of the story, the centre of the triangle with Maggie and John revolving around her. All three characters are beautifully played (plus small but pointed side roles for the likes of Maya Rudolph and Bill Hader), and the shifting dynamic between them is thoroughly enjoyable, even if the artificiality of the plot makes it difficult to believe. Perhaps Miller's point is that coincidence and even nature conspire against people to direct their fates. Or maybe it's just a cautionary tale about the danger of getting what you wish for.

Rich Cline

Watch the trailer for Maggie's Plan:



Maggie's Plan

Facts and Figures

Genre: Comedies

Run time: 98 mins

In Theaters: Wednesday 27th April 2016

Production compaines: Round Films, Rachael Horovitz Productions

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

IMDB: 6.6 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: Damon Cardasis, ,

Starring: as Maggie, as Georgette, as John, as Tony, as Felicia, as Kliegler, as Guy, Alex Morf as Al Bentwaithe, Jackson Frazer as Paul, Mina Sundwall as Justine, Sue Jean Kim as Komiko, Monte Green as Max, Fredi Walker-Browne as Beverly

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