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I Smile Back DVD Review

I Smile Back DVD

Not even Sarah Silverman can save “I Smile Back.”

“I Smile Back” is a dramatic film that revolves around the character of Laney- a housewife and loving mother who is unhappy in life. She struggles from an unnamed mental illness and resorts to self-destructive behavior such as drugs and cheating on her husband. After her husband finds her in a messed up state, Laney goes to rehab to try and get her life back together. The question is- will the rehab work or will her life further spiral out of control?

“I Smile Back” feels like the type of clichéd movie that makes the film festival rounds. It’s a character drama, it’s a downer of a movie, it contains artistic lingering shots, but it does feature some great acting. That’s exactly what this movie is and not much else. Considering its serious subject matter, one would think it would be an in depth character study, but it’s not. Laney’s character lacks real depth and the film primarily goes in circles.

Drawbacks aside, there’s simply no denying that Sarah Silverman gives a bold and impressive performance here as Laney since she alone makes the film watchable. It must be said that Silverman (who is best known for her comedic work) is slowly carving out a nice acting career between this and “Take This Waltz.” It will certainly be interesting to see where her career goes from here.


Presentation: 2.40:1. How does it look? The cinematography shines even in standard definition.

Audio Track: Dolby Digital 5.1. How does it sound? The track doesn’t have a ton to do since this is mostly a dialogue driven film. Still, it does the job.

Extras: Broadgreen Pictures trailers and an extra titled “In Conversation With…Sarah Silverman At Toronto International Film Festival 40.” In this near 20 minute conversation, Silverman talks about dramatic work, “I Smile Back,” acting, the cast, and more.


February 24, 2016 - Posted by | DVD review | ,

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