Halley Feiffer

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Posterity Opening Night Party Arrivals

Halley Feiffer and Rebecca Henderson - Opening night party for the Atlantic Theater Company production Posterity, held at Moran's restaurant - Arrivals. at Moran's restaurant, - New York City, New York, United States - Monday 16th March 2015

Appropriate Behavior Review


Excellent

With an astute and very funny script, this quirky comedy is packed with entertaining characters and situations that continually catch the audience by surprise. Actor-filmmaker Desiree Akhavan's style is reminiscent of the TV series Girls (a show she has appeared on), as she plays a flawed young woman doing the best to get through her chaotic life in the big city. And there's a clear sense that she knows all to well what she's talking about.

Akhavan plays Shirin, a young woman who feels like life has dealt her a double-whammy: she's bisexual and Persian. Her Iranian parents (Anh Duong and Hooman Majd) prefer to avoid her sexuality, so they never acknowledge the fact that she is still reeling from her breakup with Maxine (Rebecca Henderson). And her brother (Arian Moayed) wants her to be quiet about it so he can marry his fiancee (Justine Cotsonas) before the family peace is disrupted. To get on with her life, Shirin rents a room with hipster roommates in Brooklyn and turns to her best friend Crystal (Halley Feiffer) for support. But without a job, her prospects are limited, so she finds some work through a stoner friend (Scott Adsit) and has a go at teaching filmmaking to 5-year-olds.

There isn't much of an actual plot here, just a series of life experiences that push Shirin one way or another. And all of them are hilarious. Intriguingly, the film builds up a sense of narrative momentum in the flashbacks that trace Shirin's relationship with Maxine, most notably the ways it is affecting her life after the breakup. Akhavan's script is packed with bristly dry comedy that's intelligent and surprisingly resonant. Even as the story touches on important issues like coming out to the family, it never feels preachy simply because it's so truthful.

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The First Wives Club Benefit Reading

John Ellison Conlee, Mark Blum, Margo Seibert, Darren Goldstein, Michael Cyril Creighton, Stephen Kunken, Rebecca Naomi Jones, Halley Feiffer, Julie Halston, Julie White, Jessica Hecht, Mary Testa, Mary Beth Peil and Sarah Steele - Stars of the 'The First Wives Club' attended a Benefit Reading of the screenplay in New York, New York, United States - Tuesday 14th October 2014

Mark Blum, Michael Cyril Creighton, Julie Halston and Margo Seibert
Mark Blum, Michael Cyril Creighton, Julie Halston, Margo Seibert and John Ellison Conlee
Mark Blum and Julie Halston

The Wayside Motor Inn Opening Night Party - Arrivals

Betty Gilpin and Halley Feiffer - The opening night party for ‘The Wayside Motor Inn’ at the Signature Theatre in New York City saw the cast photographed on arrival. - Friday 5th September, 2014

Betty Gilpin and Halley Feiffer

Opening Night Party for Intimacy - Arrivals

Halley Feiffer - Opening night after party for the New Group production of Intimacy held at the Out Hotel - Arrivals. - New York, New York, United States - Thursday 30th January 2014

Halley Feiffer

Opening night of 'Buyer and Cellar' at the Rattlestick Playwrights Theater

Halley Feiffer - Opening night of 'Buyer and Cellar' at the Rattlestick Playwrights Theater - Arrivals - New York City, United States - Wednesday 3rd April 2013

Halley Feiffer
America Ferrera and Halley Feiffer

The Messenger Review


Excellent
Another dark, gloomy drama about home life during wartime, this film features some seriously great performances and a theme that will resonate powerfully with thoughtful audiences.

Will (Foster) is just out of military hospital after being injured while serving in Iraq; his relationship with his girlfriend (Malone) is strained, and he's not happy about his new assignment informing families about the deaths of loved ones in the warzone. His mentor for the job is the jaded Tony (Harrelson), who survives by maintaining his distance from the families: "Don't touch the NOK" (next of kin), he tells Will. But Will can't help but reach out to them, and one widow (Morton) makes a particularly strong impression on him.

Continue reading: The Messenger Review

Margot at the Wedding Review


OK
Eventually it may be that Noah Baumbach could turn into this country's answer to France's Eric Rohmer, turning out a steady diet of small, circumspect dramas about the lives and neurotic times of New York-era literary bourgeoisie. That's one of the things that comes to mind as one takes in Margot at the Wedding, Baumbach's fourth time out as writer/director and one that seems to set a template for the future. It's a chill breeze of a film steeped in ugly inter-familial squabbling and the blinkered mentality of its self-absorbed characters who can generally only raise their gaze from their own navels long enough to find something lacking in the person they're addressing. The sour tone which was shot through Baumbach's previous work, The Squid and the Whale, has almost completely curdled here, though without losing any of that film's swift tartness.

As the titular Margot, Nicole Kidman does the yeoman's share of the work here, as the bitchy and borderline sociopathic older sister who's reluctantly comes up from Manhattan to her sister Pauline's wedding at the ancestral country home, where she's marrying a guy she finds barely even worthy of her contempt. "He's not ugly, he's just completely unattractive," is one of the many evil bon mots that Baumbach gives Kidman to spit out in her seemingly compulsive need to find fault in and drive to despair anyone within eyesight. She makes quite a pair with Jennifer Jason Leigh as Pauline, the two of them strangely beautiful while nestled under stringy and flyaway mouse-brown mops. Kidman's eyes are flashing and penetrating as Leigh's are dreamy, the two of them seemingly not of this planet but in entirely different ways.

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Stephanie Daley Review


Good
As film subjects go, newborn death and its connections to the abortion debate are about as easy to approach as a pit of bible-carrying vipers. Though its plot comes straight from the Lifetime channel production line, the truth of the situation presented becomes more fleshed out and personal but nevertheless controversial to anyone who has followed similar stories on the nightly news. As one would guess, it's with careful steps that filmmaker Hilary Brougher takes on this subject in her sophomore effort Stephanie Daley.

Stephanie (Amber Tamblyn) was a good ol' religious girl before the whole rigmarole, spending Sunday morning at church looking after little kids while her parents (Jim Gaffigan and Melissa Leo) make small talk with the priest and other parishners. Being a sweet girl, her heart can't help but go out to the soldier-to-be who she meets at a friend's party. Sure enough, their quickie tryst ends with a bun in the oven and the boy nowhere to be found. Ultimately, Stephanie ends up giving birth on a school ski trip in a public toilet. The premature baby dies, leaving the world stunned and with nothing but questions galore.

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The Squid and the Whale Review


Excellent
One feels pretty easy predicting at the start of Noah Baumbach's The Squid and the Whale - after a scene in which a family of four plays tennis and the father keeps hitting the ball so hard that the mother finally gives up in disgust - that divorce is not far away. Note to husbands: Do not try to hit spouse with tennis ball. Be especially wary of said aggressive behavior if that spouse is Laura Linney.

It's Park Slope, Brooklyn, circa 1986, and the Berkman family is splitting up at the mid-swing of the pendulum of the adults' professional lives. On the downswing is the father, Bernard (Jeff Daniels), a professor and once-celebrated writer. Linney plays the mother, Joan, a blossoming writer coming out from under Bernard's shadow. He's been distant and awful, she's had affairs and been generally resentful, so now Bernard is moving to a falling-down house on the far side of Prospect Park while she gets to keep the gorgeous brownstone. The kids, of course, get screwed, with split custody keeping them in one house for half the week and the other house for the rest. Ensuring that things will stay nice and dysfunctional, the kids choose sides, with teenaged Walt (Jesse Eisenberg) sticking with Bernard and even picking up his mannerisms, while younger Frank (Owen Kline) throws in with Joan.

Continue reading: The Squid and the Whale Review

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