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Juliet, Naked

Rated 14 Accompaniment (Coarse Language) ~ Runs 98 minutes

Dir.: Jesse Peretz, US

Rose Byrne, Ethan Hawke, Chris O’Dowd

“Its racy title notwithstanding, Juliet, Naked is not salacious but delicious. A charming film about two very different people trying to press reset in their lives, it is comic, heartfelt and smart as they come... Nick Hornby (High Fidelity, About a Boy) has been well-served here by the screenwriters, who've made expert use of his superb ear for dialogue and gift for playful situations that make you laugh while clandestinely engaging your deeper feelings. Juliet, Naked begins by having its two protagonists essentially introduce themselves on-screen. Up first is Duncan (the brilliantly comic O'Dowd), a Brit who redefines the limits of musical obsession by being the world's biggest fan of a man he considers ‘the most underappreciated figure in rock history.’ That would be cult favorite Tucker Crowe, an American singer-songwriter who dropped from sight decades ago... Duncan's partner of 15 years is the sane and self-aware Annie... Annie left a promising career in London to return to Sandcliff to tend to her dying father, but her life of running the same local history museum he did is beginning to seem like a trap... Annie has no idea how to change her life until an unexpected package arrives. Pretentiously labeled ‘Juliet, Naked,’ it's nothing less than the acoustic demo versions of the album that Duncan reveres as one of the great works of Western civilization... Annie writes a disparaging review of it for Duncan's fan website that catches the attention of the real Crowe, which is where Juliet, Naked kicks into a higher gear. Perfectly played by Hawke, who has never been more casually charming, Crowe turns out to be a feckless ex-rocker now living in a garage behind the home of one of his exes, trying to turn over a new leaf with his youngest child, 6-year-old Jackson... Inevitably, circumstances conspire to bring Tucker to Britain, but how the unavoidable meeting with Annie happens and the way the complex and completely unexpected ramifications of that play out are a treat to behold... As a playful romantic triangle with a shape all its own, Juliet, Naked shouldn't be missed.” - Kenneth Turan, The L. A. Times



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December 9