In The Anniversary Party, Joe (Alan Cumming) and Sally (Jennifer Jason Leigh) are a shakily married Hollywood couple celebrating their sixth anniversary with a party full of high-maintenance friends, neighbors, colleagues, and ex-lovers. The gathering starts out tense and awkward, then emotions turn increasingly naked and raw, as a stellar ensemble (including Gwyneth Paltrow, Kevin Kline, and Parker Posey) probes the neuroses and agendas of some dozen self-absorbed people. Cumming and Leigh, who wrote and directed Party together, make a surprisingly effective first-time filmmaking team: Their comedy of modern Tinseltown manners is glancingly witty, sneakily sardonic, and, finally, hauntingly sad. B+
(The Anniversary Party: Peter Sorel)
Genre: Drama; Starring: Alan Cumming, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Jane Adams, Mina Badie, Jennifer Beals, Phoebe Cates, John Benjamin Hickey, Kevin Kline, Denis O'Hare, Gwyneth Paltrow, Parker Posey, John C. Reilly, Blair Tefkin; Director: Alan Cumming, Jennifer Jason Leigh; Author: Alan Cumming, Jennifer Jason Leigh; Producer (group): Fine Line Features, Ghoulardi Film Company; Runtime (in minutes): 115; MPAA Rating: R; Distributor: Fine Line Features
Posted February 8 2002 — 12:00 AM EST
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