“You-ness. Me-ness. Us-ness. We-ness.”
A Marin County husband (Martin Mull) and wife (Tuesday Weld) struggle to keep their marriage and family together in the midst of New Age temptations.
Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:
- Christopher Lee Films
- Marital Problems
- Tuesday Weld Films
I’ll admit to a fondness for this silly but frequently giggle-inducing satire about California’s post-hippie culture in the late 1970s (based on a novel by newspaper columnist Cyra McFadden), which mercilessly skewers some of the era’s more far-out fads and phenomenons — from teenagers joining Moonie cults, to psychobabbling pseudo-therapists, to “free love” in its many forms — all within the very particular socio-cultural milieu of upper-middle-class, primarily white Marin County. While the motley ensemble of characters (including Christopher Lee as a closeted gay weekend motorcyclist!) never emerge as more than simply iconic representations, they’re not really meant to: Martin Mull’s put-upon lawyer-husband-father is simply a representation of a “sane” reaction to the crazed-out world he finds himself and his family immersed in.
Not all the vignettes are equally humorous, but many are inspired — particularly those involving Sally Kellerman as a happily spaced-out mom whose son (Anthony Battaglia) is in continual psychotherapy with a coke-sniffing shyster therapist (Peter Bonerz); who asks her African-American maid (Ann Weldon) to shuck her uniform in order to look like an acquaintance rather than an employee; and who thinks nothing about engaging in casual serial marriage as a hobby. I wouldn’t call Serial a must-see comedy for all film fanatics, but it remains a personal wacky favorite.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
- Numerous humorous vignettes
No, but it’s definitely recommended — and a personal “must see”.