Living Out Loud (1998) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

I guess Living Out Loud is supposed to be some women's empowerment film or something. Holly Hunter is a non-working wife, devastated because her rich doctor husband has dumped her for a younger woman, even though Holly gave up he own career to put hubby through med school.


Holly Hunter shows everything in a massage scene.

Now you and I are supposed to empathize with her. After all, she is left with nothing except half of their fortune, a lavish apartment overlooking Central Park, a perfect body, a still-young face, and all the talent she had before the marriage. She now has both enough brains and enough money to go to medical school, and she's still beautiful enough that she can have any man she wants.

Oh, the poor dear.

DVD info from Amazon

  • Commentary by director Richard LaGravenese

  • Reading of Anton Chekhov's short story "Misery" by writer Stephen Schiff

  • Reading of Anton Chekhov's short story "The Kiss" by actress Claudia Shear

  • Five deleted scenes including a full performance of the song "Lush Life" by Queen Latifah

  • Widescreen anamorphic format. 2.35:1

Danny DeVito plays a loser, a likeable night elevator operator who's always hanging around with sharks out of his league, and who falls in love with Hunter when fate throws them together. He is shattered to find that, as a potential love interest, he is pretty much beneath her notice.

For me, the highlight of this film was Queen Latifah, who plays a blues/jazz singer. I'm sure you know Queenie can sing, but I'll bet you just don't know how well. She sings Gershwin and Porter as well as anyone I've ever heard, and I like this kind of singing much more than I like that musical comedy style in Chicago, so I enjoyed when the Queen was makin' music, and that made the movie tolerable for me.

By the way, Danny DeVito is also a surprisingly good singer.

The Critics Vote

  • General consensus: three stars. Ebert 3.5/4, Berardinelli 3/4

The People Vote ...

  • It was a moderate success on a small scale. Budgeted at $12 million, it grossed $13 million domestically.
The meaning of the IMDb score: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence equivalent to about three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, comparable to approximately two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, equivalent to about a two star rating from the critics. Films rated below five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film - this score is roughly equivalent to one and a half stars from the critics or even less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. (C+ means it has no crossover appeal, but will be considered excellent by genre fans, while C- indicates that it we found it to be a poor movie although genre addicts find it watchable). D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Any film rated C- or better is recommended for fans of that type of film. Any film rated B- or better is recommended for just about anyone. We don't score films below C- that often, because we like movies and we think that most of them have at least a solid niche audience. Now that you know that, you should have serious reservations about any movie below C-.

Based on this description, this film is a C. Hard film to classify - romantic drama with a hint of comedy? Slice of life?

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