A decade after writing and directing the indie favorite Garden State (2004), TV actor Zach Braff returns with his second feature, a huggy story about a failed actor (Braff) trying to get closure with his disappointed father (Mandy Patinkin) before the old man succumbs to cancer. The earlier, comedic scenes work a lot better than the later, dramatic ones, thanks mainly to Braff's wide-eyed, deadpan performance and good supporting work from Kate Hudson as the hero's frustrated wife and Josh Gad as his no-account brother. This often plays like a younger, hipper version of a Rob Reiner comedy, which isn't really a compliment unless you consider younger and hipper to be inherently complimentary; the movie was largely bankrolled by a Kickstarter campaign that collected more than $3 million, and the result is agreeable enough that none of the 46,520 contributors is likely to feel gypped.
Director: Zach Braff
Producer: Stacey Sher, Michael Shamberg, Zach Braff, Adam Braff, Christopher Woodrow, Molly Conners, Maria Cestone, Sarah Johnson and Hoyt Morgan
Cast: Zach Braff, Kate Hudson, Mandy Patinkin, Josh Gad, Joey King, Pierce Gagnon, Donald Faison, Ashley Greene, Jim Parsons, Michael Weston, Alexander Chaplin, Allan Rich, Cody Sullivan, Silvia Curiel and Nichole Galicia