Writer/director/actor Miranda July's "Me, You and Everyone We Know" is a subtle, character-driven indie movie that won awards at Sundance and other festivals. The picture is surprising, off-beat, original and rather poetic in its own quiet way. The picture stars July as Christine, an artist who struggles to get her work seen. John Hawkes ("Deadwood") stars as Richard, a shoe salesman who finds it difficult to connect with people, and is forced to move into an apartment with his two kids shortly after a trick he was trying to do goes completely wrong.
The movie doesn't offer a great deal of plot, but mainly focuses on the characters and their interactions, with a great deal of little moments. That results in the movie feeling a tad episodic, yet July's film does develop characters well and nicely portrays different people attempting to make a connection, despite often not quite having the ability to reach out and do so.
Meanwhile, a couple of neighborhood girls taunt an older neighbor, and eventually become involved with Richard's two sons. Richard, going through a separation, initially blocks Christine's interest, as with an early sequence where she gets into his car rather happily and he turns around and quietly asks her what she's doing there.
That scene, as with the rest of the movie, is superbly written and acted. The movie focuses on a lot of different characters and tries to focus on their interactions. It's a difficult thing to do, especially when you're trying to fit it all in 92 minutes. However, July does it mostly well; although it's still rather episodic, they're almost all compelling episodes (a moment where a goldfish finds itself more involved in traffic than it would probably like to be and managing to make it through the ordeal is memorable.) Also, these are likable characters and, despite their issues and flaws, they are almost all sympathetic.
Although "Me and You and Everyone We Know" focuses on some troubling and emotional issues, the movie does have an interesting way about portraying it all that seems somewhat light, and yet very grounded. July (who I think looks like Catherine Keener a bit, as well as a bit of Audrey Tautou) is a former performance artist that has done some short films before, but her feature debut is definitely an enjoyable one and I look forward to what she'll do next.
VIDEO: "Me and You and Everyone We Know" is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen by Sony Pictures Home Video and the presentation is quite good. Sharpness and detail are first-rate, with no softness or inconsistency. Some slight edge enhancement is present, but otherwise, no concerns are seen. Colors remained natural and crisp, with no smearing or other faults.
SOUND: The film's 5.1 presentation was fine and understandably, definitely dialogue-driven. Audio quality was satisfactory, with clear dialogue and music.
EXTRAS: Previews for other titles from the studio and 6 deleted scenes.
Final Thoughts: It may not quite be everyone's cup-of-tea, but "Me and You and Everyone We Know" is an interesting, well-written and acted drama with touches of lightness. The DVD edition is short on supplements, but audio/video quality is fine. Those interested should certainly try a rental.
The Film B+