I WANT SOMEONE TO EAT CHEESE WITH
Length: 80 minutes
Director: Jeff Garlin (“Curb Your Enthusiasm”)
Writer: Jeff Garlin (“Curb Your Enthusiasm”)
Starring: Jeff Garlin, Sarah Silverman, Bonnie Hunt, Gina Gershon, Amy Sedaris, Richard Kind, Aaron Carter, Mina Kolb, Paul Mazursky, Tim Kazurinsky, Rebecca Allen, Roger Bart, David Pasquesi, Steve Dahl
Chicago’s comedy troupe has produced many talents over the years and with that many successes- Jeff Garlin is one of them. He is, of course, most well known as Larry David’s manager, Jeff, on HBO’s brilliant “Curb Your Enthusiasm” (which Garlin also occasionally co-writes and directs). “I Want Someone to Eat Cheese With” is based on Garlin’s one man stage show that I imagine would be Garlin’s life is he hadn’t have struck success with “Curb”. He plays James Aaron- an overweight, neurotic Second City actor who is let go from the group because, according to the owner (Richard Kind), he’s just been with them for too long. It’s like Tim Meadows being ousted from “Saturday Night Live” after all those years, except nobody knows who James Aaron is. James lives at home and naturally doesn’t have much success in acting or with the ladies. Then, curiously, he finds himself in a love triangle that is anything but scorching or immediate. There’s an awkward school teacher (Bonnie Hunt) who may or may not have a crush on him, but a fellow school teacher (“Strangers with Candy”’s Amy Sedaris) warns him that she’s just a “chubby chaser” (a woman who likes to sleep with fat guys and then ditch them). The more intriguing prospect is the young, pretty, and outspoken Beth (Sarah Silverman) who works at an ice cream shop and confesses to him that she just wants “someone to eat cheese with” (her way of saying someone to grow old with). James doesn’t really have the confidence or know how to fully pursue either women and he finds himself not sure of what to do next. There’s no doubt that Garlin has borrowed heavily from one of his heroes (and mine), Woody Allen (except imagine Woody larger, slightly less neurotic, and living with his mother). He even has the mandatory philosophical best friend (David Pasquesi) who tries to give him good advice that James agrees with, but doesn’t follow. There’s even a nice amount of Jackie Gleason songs on the soundtrack. Like Allen, Garlin has a knack for comedic dialogue and characters. Sarah Silverman is his Diane Keaton and Bonnie Hunt his Mia Farrow. The material may not be fresh, but Garlin is a surprisingly confident director and there’s a naturally funny flow to his film. The conversations between the characters are funny and engaging (the dates with Garlin and Silverman are the best). You don’t get to see this side of Garlin on “Curb”. Watching “I Want Someone To Eat Cheese With” makes you want to see more of it.
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