Living Out Loud, Living Out Loud Movie Review, Movie Review, Film Review
Michael A. Maynez   photo

"Living  Out Loud"

Richard  LaGravenese, in his initial debut as a director, has also written this elevator ride of emotions, highs and lows, letting the dialogue serve better to his directorial efforts and it come out brilliant.  The fact that he has such an outstanding cast in Holly Hunter, in a role that most actresses would kill for and Danny DeVito, so understated and giving the performance of his life.  They are not only mismatched, yet they work like velvet gloves made for each other, knowing full well that it can’t ever be.

Holly Hunter as Judith Nelson has been recently dumped by her husband for a younger colleague, is having a hard time coping with being thrown over, she hangs around at a small jazz club, where she meets Queen Latifah, as a would be Billie Holiday singer.  They don’t seem to hit it off right away, but Latifah serves some beautiful old songs so stylish that you wish there was more of her on the screen. Such  as “Be Anything, But Be Mine”, and the superb “Lush Life”, they also serve as progression for many of  Hunter’s emotions.  Martin Donovan as the insensitive husband , knows that territory well and he makes up for the well-heeled heal.  Elias Koteas, as a turning point in the story when he kisses Hunter in a janitorial room and causes her to star t thinking of how lonely and how much she really needs the fulfillment of her physical needs , is a revelation in character development as well as relationships that must be investigated.

Richard LaGravenese, has surrounded himself with the cinematography of  John Bailey,  the music of  George Fenton and costumes by Jeffrey Kurland.  A sophistication prevails throughout the dialogue that is rarely found in film.  THUMBS  UP FOR LAGRAVENESE.

Living Out Loud
New Line Cinema
Holly Hunter ------------ Judith Nelson
Danny DeVito ---------- Pat
Queen Latifah
Martin Donovan
Rachael Leigh Cook ---- Young Judith
Richard Schiff
Lin Shaye

Directed by ------------- Richard LaGravenese
Produced by ------------ Danny DeVito, Michael Shamberg, Stacey Sher
Music by --------------- Mervyn Warren
Camera ---------------- John Bailey
Editor ----------------- Jon Gregory, Lynzee Klingman
Production Design by -- Nelson Coates
Screenplay by --------- Richard LaGravenese
MPAA Rated R for language, and for some drug content and sexuality.

To contact Michael send e-mail to
To main index
Web Site by Alan Case
Original Date 23 November 1998