Me and You and Everyone We Know movie review, Miranda July, John Hawkes, Miles Thompson. Review by Jeffrey M. Anderson
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"Me & You & Everyone We Know"
3 stars
90 minutes | Rated: R
LIMITED: Friday, July 1, 2005
Written & directed by Miranda July

Starring Miranda July, John Hawkes, Miles Thompson, Brandon Ratcliff, Natasha Slayton, Najarra Townsend, Carlie Westerman, Brad William Henke, Hector Elias, Ellen Geer, Tracy Wright, Jordan Potter

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On-screen charms of writer-director add lift to oddball melancholy ensemble piece 'Me and You And Everyone'

 by Jeffrey M. Anderson (Combustible Celluloid)

It probably helps a great deal that the wispy, flower-like Miranda July appears in her own film, as her adorable, blue-eyed presence warms what would have been a cold, quirky, Todd Solondz-like experience in "Me and You and Everyone We Know."

Like a mini-"Short Cuts," the story follows several lost and lonely characters as they cross paths in funny, sad and sometimes disturbing ways. A six year-old boy chats on an internet sex site, a man lights his hand on fire and a woman practically throws herself at him, not comprehending how dangerous or unhinged he may be. Yet none of this sets off any alarm bells, thanks to July's wide-eyed dreaminess and eternal hope.

A former performance artist and video maker, her feature debut plays both with memorable visuals and lovingly written words. From the opening sequence -- in which she records two voices for a potential video art piece -- she raises our hopes and manages to keep them there.

July plays Christine, a video artist who falls for Richard (John Hawkes), a newly divorced father of two boys, one a teenager and the other only six. Christine also drives an Elder Cab and becomes involved with some of her aged clients. Otherwise, we meet a couple of teenage girls experimenting with sex, Richard's African-American ex-wife, who already has a new boyfriend, and a lonely art museum curator.

I wouldn't go so far as to call this picture "sweet," but it's definitely funny and appealing in an oddball way. One passage of dialogue, equating the length of a relationship to the length of a sidewalk, is better than any sequence in any recent Hollywood romantic comedy.

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