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March 11, 2005

The Upside of Anger

Upside_of_anger Abandonment is in the eye of a guilt-ridden alcoholic wife (Joan Allen) after her husband disappears with his secretary in a scattershot movie about suburban ennui as glimpsed through a gauzy female gaze. Kevin Costner plays Denny Davies, a retired-pro-baseball-player-turned-radio-talk-show- host who shares his midday drinking and pot smoking duties with the newly single Terry Wolfmeyer, a mother of four insufferable teenaged daughters (Alicia Witt, Erika Christensen, Keri Russell, Rachel Wood). Every character behaves badly by sleeping with wretched people and milling aimlessly about toward an anti climatic ending that's pasted together with a vague and drippy voice-over narration by the youngest daughter.

Writer/director/actor Mike Binder (writer on HBO's "The Mind Of The Married Man") is to blame for this melodramatic game of Three Card Monte.

Rated R. 116 mins. (C-) (Two Stars)

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