Wednesday, May 3, 2017

"The Dinner" Not Altogether Delicious


The (Endless) Dinner

By Skip Sheffield

Have you ever been to a dinner party you thought would never end? “The Dinner” is one such party. This movie by Oven Moverman, based on a novel by Herman Koch, sports some A-list actors, including Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Steve Coogan, Rebecca Hall and Chloe Sevigny.
The dinner of the title is being held in a high-class restaurant. The movie is divided into segments as you would experience at a fancy dinner. It starts with an Aperitif, in which the couples meet and are served a very expensive wine menu. Then there is the Appetizer, which hints of turmoil to come. Katelyn Lohman (Rebecca Hall) is upset her husband Paul (Steve Coogan) didn’t warn her about the possibly unhinged adopted son of Paul’s brother Stan (Richard Gere).
Michael Lohman (Charlie Plummer) is up to mischief of his own, having pilfered money from his dad’s company.
Paul (Coogan) is a lowly school teacher. His brother Stan (Gere) is a big deal success. The drama continues through the Cheese Course. Stan urges his younger brother to seek psychiatric help. Paul is so upset he is almost thrown out of the restaurant.

During the Digestif course, Stan’s wife Barbara (Sevigny) loses her cool and threatens to leave him. If this weren’t enough, Michael Lohman (Plummer) is up to some malicious mischief involving a smelly homeless woman. Is your appetite whetted yet? “The Dinner” plays very much like a play- a very unpleasant one. It is not one I want to see again.

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