The stay-at-home moms of L.A.s tony Silver Lake neighborhood have it all Pilates-toned bods, Lilly Pulitzer sundresses, nannies. But witty, restless Rachel (Kathryn Hahn), married to a successful game developer, feels unfulfilled, especially in the bedroom.
When the couple goes to a strip club in an attempt to spice things up, Rachel gets a lap dance from McKenna (the delightful Juno Temple). Absorbed with curiosity about her pole-dancing polar opposite, Rachel seeks her out and offers her a more respectable job as live-in nanny. Nice gesture. But it soon becomes clear that Rachel, who finds out that McKenna is also a prostitute, is just as interested in vicarious dark thrills as she is in giving someone a hand up.
Hahn (Parks & Recreation) shines in her first starring role, providing most of the films laughs, drunkenly ranting at a wine-tippling klatsch, being a reluctant but fascinated third wheel on one of McKennas dates. She turns a character who would be easy to hate into someone youd want as a BFF. Temple, cute as Hello Kitty in a thong yet believable as a self-aware sex worker, mesmerizes.
Writer/director Jill Soloway (United States of Tara, Six Feet Under) knows how to create sophisticated drama that dares to go wherever there might be. She excels at drawing out nuances in female friendship. Here, though, she promises an uncomfortable expose of middle-class morality, then doesnt follow through.
After a predictable but squirmingly well-executed climax, in which vengeful McKenna mingles with a bunch of drunk poker-playing husbands, two-way guilt leads to renewed appreciation of Saran-wrapped prosperous lives and enthusiastic intramarital sex.
Wait huh? Hahn teeters on the ledge of her solar-power bay window, then jumps into her pool with a just-kidding grin. When having it all makes you just sooo bored, its only natural to go looking for trouble. But to find it, explore it and then retreat into your cashmere-lined cocoon without having really learned anything thats unforgivable.
The Charlotte Observer welcomes your comments on news of the day. The more voices engaged in conversation, the better for us all, but do keep it civil. Please refrain from profanity, obscenity, spam, name-calling or attacking others for their views.
Have a news tip? You can send it to a local news editor; email firstname.lastname@example.org to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Charlotte Observer.Read moreRead less