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Family photo

Three grown up siblings meet up again at the funeral of their grandfather and discuss what to do with their increasingly senile grandmother. They bicker and make up and realise that they are, hey, a dysfunctional family who have maybe more in common with each other than they first thought.

We follow their individual lives, the living statue who’s more irresponsible than her adolescent son, the depressive computer games developer and the social worker who’s unable to deal with her own problems. They see psychiatrists and flirt and contemplate suicide, and in the end they all have a group hug which makes everything better.

It’s all perfectly fine and competently acted but at no time did I feel any empathy for any of them. As I watched all these crises being enacted on the screen, they just felt like those of fictional characters who don’t really exist.

It’s not that any of it was unbelievable, more the reverse. There’s one scene where one of them goes in search of an intimate chat but ends up having to spend the evening listening to the boring chit chat if unexpected guests.

Well that was most of the film for me. Look I’m sorry that you’re depressed, but maybe you should be a little less self-obsessed (plus you’re a fictional character). Its sad that you can’t go to the village where you had that idyllic family holiday – now here’s an idea, why don’t you go there without making out that it’s so hard to organise. And I’m sorry that things are so difficult in your family, but your problems seem trivial compared to those of most people. Just get a grip.

Still, at least I learned whatever happened to vanessa paradis.

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