FRIENDS WITH MONEY
A Rehashed, Distasteful Slice of Life
Release Date: April 07, 2006
Runtime: 88 minutes
Distributor: Sony Pictures Classics
Director: Nicole Holofcener
Producer: Anthony Bregman
Writer: Nicole Holofcener
Address Comments To:Michael Barker and Tom Bernard
Sony Pictures Classics
(Sony Pictures Entertainment)
550 Madison Avenue, 8th Floor
New York, NY 10022
Phone: (212) 833-8833
Web Page: http://www.sonyclassics.com
The three married women who are more financially secure, Frannie (Joan Cusack) Christine (Catherine Keener) and Jane (Frances McDormand), are worried about Olivia (Jennifer Aniston). Olivia has not found the financial or relational stability that these women seem to have. While their working with their personal trainers or remodeling their multi-million dollar homes, they watch as Olivia floats from relationship to relationship, and they observe as Olivia is forced to take a job as a maid just so she can make ends meet.
As the story develops, maybe Olivia’s friends’ lives don’t seem so perfect after all.
Jane struggles with a burgeoning mid-life crisis while everyone around her seems to think that her depression stems from her effeminate husband that they all think is homosexual. Christine and her husband are at the point of separation and divorce because they find themselves continually growing apart emotionally. The only one who seems to have her life together is Frannie; coincidentally the richest of all of them, and the one who they refer to as “I’d have no problems if I were that rich either.”
Eventually, Olivia finds herself in an unexpected relationship that will ultimately transform her life for the better. Her friends also find themselves in places of transformation as well. Some transformations good, some bad, but through it all, the women know that they have each other.
This movie is a rehashed, slice of life film that takes its cue from so many friendship stories that precede it. The concept of the single friend who is pitied by all the married friends is an old storyline. Unfortunately for FRIENDS WITH MONEY, this old storyline is not tackled in a new way. Has anyone ever heard of Stephen Sondheim’s broadway musical, “COMPANY”? Or NBC’s debunked comedy, “THE SINGLE GUY”? Or countless other, “our sad-struggling-single-friend” stories? Besides the music, the only differences between COMPANY and FRIENDS WITH MONEY are that instead of Bobby, is Olivia, and instead of New York – Los Angeles.
The other regrettably aspects for this movie involve Olivia’s promiscuous lifestyle. Within 88 minutes, viewers learn of her unrequited love for a married man with whom she had an affair. They see her on an unsuccessful blind date only to have promiscuous sexual relations with the jerk on several occasions. There is also more implied sex with another fellow after her first date with him. Added to those poor lifestyle choices are the four separate depictions of Olivia smoking pot and her implied use of a vibrator. Olivia is a tragic, depressing character whose story is not worth telling.
Also unsettling is the story of Jane’s husband, played by Simon McBurney. His character, Aaron, is a slightly feminine, sensitive man who designs soaps and beauty products and buys only top-line designer clothes. Every character in the movie agrees that he is an unrealized homosexual. He is hit on several times by men, even though he is completely unsuspecting. Every time he realizes what is happening, though, he quickly lets the pursuers know that he is married. It should be noted that, throughout the film, he never gives in to any homosexual advances.
This distasteful slice of life tale is a tired rehashing of the same fare audiences have been subjected to time and again. With the sexuality and drug use as well as the strong language, this movie is excessive and not worth anyone’s box office dollars.
Media-Wise people should realize that those promiscuous lifestyles full of fornication and illegal drug habits are destructive lifestyles. The good news is that God calls His people out of that type of darkness and into the glorious light and life of Jesus Christ.
This slice of life is distasteful. With strong sexual situations, plus dialogue, drug use, plenty of foul language, and a homosexual agenda, the movie leaves a bad taste in one's mouth. It has a very strong humanist worldview with a high emphasis on material wealth and elements of Romanticism that exalts emotion over reason, promotes a promiscuous lifestyle and contains strong homosexual references. Media-Wise people should realize that these promiscuous lifestyles are destructive. The good news is that God calls His people out of that type of darkness and into the glorious light and life of Jesus Christ.