Parents' Guide to


By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Leisurely, wistful drama about people and their belongings.

Movie R 2018 114 minutes
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This dreamy, languid drama drifts appealingly from character to character, somehow finding profound emotional weight and layers in the relationships between people and their belongings. Written by the talented Alex Ross Perry (The Color Wheel, Listen Up Philip) and directed by former music video maker Mark Pellington, Nostalgia is a fine combination of visuals and content that benefits from asking its very unusual question: What do the things that people leave behind mean? And why do some things mean more than others? How are memories connected? What happens when someone's memories are impermanent?

The great cast helps things along, although the movie is a little uneven. At first, it looks as if Ortiz' insurance man might be a great connective device, something of an angel who helps all the characters in the film; but even though he's quite likable, he disappears early. Some characters get a lot of screen time, while other talented actors -- like James LeGros and Patton Oswalt -- only appear briefly, even though they're all introduced with the same weight. Moreover, the movie sometimes detours off course in an effort to emotionally preload its themes. Nostalgia could have been more balanced, but it could not be more delicate. It's ultimately a moving, lovely effort.

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