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FRIENDS WITH MONEY

Starring: Jennifer Aniston, Frances McDormand, Joan Cusack and Catherine Keener
Director: Nicole Holofcener
Rated: M

FRIENDS with Money is the third feature film from writer-director Nicole Holofcener, who makes a film every five years or so while she directs television episodes to make ends meet.

The first was Walking and Talking (1996), the second Lovely and Amazing (2001).

This time she has a more A-list cast.

Jennifer Aniston is the one without money. Those with the money are Frances McDormand, Joan Cusack and Catherine Keener.

In a short running time (the film ends suddenly in mid-conversation), we get glimpses into the characters and lives of the four women.

Three are married and they are the ones with money.

They don’t have to worry and so pursue their careers and their charities with time over for helping their friend without a husband or money.

Jennifer Aniston plays a former teacher, now working as a maid, who can’t settle down and is unlucky with love – working on a kind of pragmatic morality one could learn from TV series like Friends, for instance.

Frances McDormand is very good as the angry and unsettled designer of clothes who is happy in her marriage.

Catherine Keener is always good. However, her character is also edgy and often quarrelling with her husband.

Joan Cusack’s character and her husband have lots of money and few problems, which makes her able to be a substitute mother figure.

Much of the film consists of conversations which are entertaining in their way, brief and slight perhaps, but that abrupt ending in retrospect seems right.

We don’t know what will happen to the women – but there are possibilities for the better for each of them.

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