This marks a major leap forward Apatow's work. I only hope the tepid response doesn't make him take a step backwards. A lot of the movie seems autobiographical, which might explain, along with the actors' performances, why so many of the scenes feel authentic. This movie does the best job of trudging a fine line between darkness and sentimentality. The 40-Year-Old Virgin and Knocked Up were practice.
Apatow's opus plays like a maudlin middle-aged mediation that occasionally feels obligated to indulge in some forced raunchy humor. The colossal running time and stately cinematography by Janusz Kaminski add a pretentious, over-ambitious air. Not a terrible film, really - there are some elements that work, but not enough to make the weak material as engaging or endearing as it thinks it is.
Apatow goes full Cassavetes and I fucking love it. Watched this completely at random and it just happened to be the exact day of it’s 10th anniversary. I don’t know what to do with that information, but that serendipity quietly blew my mind.
*This is not a review, just a response to a couple of comments about the music.
Jason Schwartzman hasn't been a part of Phantom Planet for a while. He has released two albums, Nighttiming and Davy, under the band name Coconut Records. The score to the film came mostly from instrumental versions of tracks from Davy. A couple of tracks from Nighttiming (including the title track) play in the background in the movie.