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A Peep At The Meyerwitz
Chrysanthepop12 December 2011
Stories about dysfunctional families have always held great appeal to me. 'Arrested Development' is among my favourite television series and 'Eulogy' and 'Little Miss Sunshine' are among my all-time favourites. I was quite excited about 'Peep World', more so for its promising cast and the trailer had me laughing out loud. While it's not up there with the aforementioned titles, it's still entertaining.

The main problem with 'Peep World' is that much of the humour felt forced and it didn't add much to the film. At times it tries to be too quirky. One example is Nathan's massive erection sequence which really didn't contribute much. Also 'Peep World' felt very short. Yes, the running time is less than the standard 90 minutes but it felt like a short film rather than a feature. It could have used more story development and I would have liked to have seen what happened to the Meyerwitz after the head recovers from the stroke.

On the plus side, the comically intense sequences are well done and I also enjoyed the final dinner scene which wasn't overdone to the point of being not funny. Of the cast, Michael C. Hall, Judy Greer and Rainn Wilson are stupendous. Ron Rifkin is great. Alicia Witt and Ron Rifkin make full use of their two scenes. Ben Schwartz is very good. Kate Mara is charming. Vivacious Taraji Penda Henson is hot. Sarah Silverman is over the top but she does occasionally manage to make you laugh.

While the writing and direction is overall decent, it is mainly the ensemble that makes it work. 'Peep World' may not be a classic but it's enjoyable nonetheless.
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Not good, not's just sort of "there"
Heislegend7 July 2011
I watched this movie for a lot of reasons. I really like Sarah Silverman and Michael C. Hall, plus I was looking for a comedy that might offer a little something different. I guess on both fronts I got what I was expecting, but it still felt like a hollow victory.

There's nothing really bad about this movie. The acting is done well and the pace is kept pretty good, but it always feels like something is missing and I still can't figure out what it would be. It seems to be one of the many comedies that tries to derive humor from awkward situations and subtle quirks in common situations. Though it's just a personal preference, that has always kind of bothered me. And the storyline of the horrendously dysfunctional family also feels a bit tired to be, especially as it's been done to much better effect.

But the film isn't without it's charms. They're just a little hard to notice. Honestly, I thought this movie delivered more on the drama aspects than the comedy and perhaps that's how it was supposed to play. But least it wasn't terrible. That's really about all the endorsement I'm willing to give it.
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Not Too Bad
rob-clement1 April 2011
This movie about a dysfunctional family being torn apart by a book published by the youngest member of the clan, Nathan, is a decent way to spend an hour and twenty minutes.

Of course, with its TV-bred cast, (Judy Greer, Michael C. Hall, Rainn Wilson, & Sarah Silverman), narration and short length, this film comes off more like a middle episode of a sitcom. In itself it is not extremely satisfying, though it has some good moments both of humor and drama.

And that's important. The trailer may not make this seem like a movie with any dramatic weight, but it is. There are some funny moments, but the more dramatic ones overshadow those. This is a dramedy that is trying to market itself as comedy. That said, these actors handle the dramatic moments incredibly well, especially coming from such comedic backgrounds.

Don't expect this to be the film adaptation of Arrested Development some people are making this out to be; though it has some funny moments (really genuinely laughable things), it's not the laugh-riot you'd expect an Arrested Development movie to be.

So yeah, in a nutshell, this movie is a well-done (if but slightly average) dramatic movie with good comedic moments.
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A PEEP into the lives of yet another dysfunctional family.
twilliams7613 July 2011
Peep World is like (almost) all of the other dysfunctional family movies I have ever come across. It has a very short tun-time (79 minutes) and a decent cast (with some surprisingly good dramatic performances turned in by some comedic actors). It also is NOT overly compelling as not many of the characters are endearing or engrossing.

A terribly-cold and downright mean-mean-mean father (Ron Rifkin - LA Confidential, Boiler Room, The Sum of All Fears) is having a celebratory birthday dinner with his four adult children in attendance. None of the kids are overly fond of their financially-successful father just as he appears to be none-too-proud of any of his offspring.

Setting the siblings at odds with one another is the success the youngest has found (Ben Schwartz - Everybody's Fine, The Other Guys) after writing a scathing novel that is being made into a movie that exposes and ridicules his entire family (save their father).

Michael C. Hall ("Dexter", "Six Feet Under") plays the oldest brother who always "tries to be there for his siblings" even as his marriage is slowly falling apart (his pregnant wife is played by a surprisingly dramatic Judy Greer - 13 Going on 30, Elizabethtown, 27 Dresses); Rainn Wilson ("The Office", Super, Sahara) is the irresponsible and lazy middle brother while the lone girl is a Drama Queen actress played by a manic and most-angry Sarah Silverman (Funny People, Jesus Is Magic, School for Scoundrels). The youngest appears to be the father's favorite simply because of his recent success and each of the kids KNOW this.

If the story had remained tight and dedicated to the family dinner, I think Peep World (the name of the exposing novel AND a strip club in the film) would have been more successful. As is (after the film's opening scene of the dinner toast, the film "rewinds" some 16 hours or so) the film easily loses itself and becomes more bitter at times than entertaining (Silverman's anger is understood; but it becomes trying and tiring).

For a film of such short-length, the cast is too extensive as it also includes Lesley Ann Warren (Clue, Twin Falls Idaho, Victor/Victoria), Alicia Witt (Mr. Holland's Opus, Vanilla Sky, The Upside of Anger), Taraji P. Henson (... Benjamin Button, Hustle & Flow, The Karate Kid), Kate Mara (Brokeback Mountain, 127 Hours, Iron Man 2) and Stephen Tobolowsky (Groundhog Day, Freaky Friday, Memento) and they are spread too thin to become heavily concerned with/by any of them (although it is always nice seeing Miss Scarlet now and again).

As there are TOO MANY dysfunctional family films in existence, one has to really stand-out to be worthy of recommendation ... and Peep World unfortunately does NOT. While there is a fun peek/peep here-and-there -- and Michael C. Hall and Judy Greer make an interesting/believable struggling duo (and woot! to Greer going dramatic again) -- Peep World isn't worth the price of admission OR the cost of the fictional book.

It is short-enough for it to not be a waste-of-time for a viewer but not everyone will think it is worth a peep either.
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Disappointing for such a good cast
cskehull2 April 2011
I was very disappointed in Peep World. I had high expectations for the movie because some of my favorite actors/comedians are in it. It is ironic that the title of the movie is Peep World and that implies you are peeping in the private lives of the characters, but that never happens. The talent was not enough to make the movie worth watching. The movie had a weird feeling to it as if you didn't start watching it from the beginning. It felt more like you started watching it in the middle and missed all the important stuff that sets up the movie. The story was about how one son's book, Peep World, affected his family. But, you never get to know all the horrible revelations that are in the book. There were very few vague references to what is in the book so you have no idea what the characters are actually going through. This movie could have been a lot better if they included the back story of what was in the book. We have no idea who these characters are and what they have been through in their dysfunctional life. So, without that, you can't relate to what they are going though now. The only positive thing I can say about the movie is at least two of the actors did a good job with their characters. Rainn Wilson was good as Joel and when I watched him it was nice not to see Dwight from the Office. Michael C. Hall was very convincing as Jack. I did feel his character's pain, frustration and humiliation. He felt real to me, probably because the frustrations he had about always having to be the "good one," the good son, good brother and the one with all the responsibility. I am in that situation daily with my own dysfunctional family and I hate it too so I really felt a connection to Jack at that point. Everybody else in the movie was just so-so. It's too bad that this movie did not go more into the contents of the book so that we could have had a background of the whole essence of the movie. Without that, the movie fell flat, very flat.
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Like watching a train wreck
ripcurl716 July 2011
Warning: Spoilers
Clearly the writers/director of this flick were trying to portray the worst in people. All in all they did a fairly good job. Most of the casting worked, perhaps they should have spent a little more time on Mr. Wilson's character, they missed a great opportunity there to shore up the film.

The major flaw of the film is Sarah Silverman....she just can't act. Just like her attempts at comedy, she tries too hard. And just like her comedy, since she has no natural ability, she is left to over the top facial expressions and lines meant to shock.

Watch this movie if you find it for free, but don't go out of your way to do so.
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Below Run-of-the-Mill Indie Comedy
cofemug19 November 2011
Warning: Spoilers
A movie armed with such a strong cast of comedians, you almost expect a movie like this to be open scripted hilarity. Sure there'd be a script, but the comedians are given free reign to riff on the situations to try to make them comedic, and to make them their own. You'd have some semblance of a hurried background story in order to get to the dinner section where all hell breaks loose and biting hilarity ensues.

This is not that movie.

That movie would have been amazing with this cast.

This movie is a strictly scripted dysfunctional family Indie comedy that is more dramatic than comedic. Which could be OK, if the characters were well drawn instead of being broad stereotypes put into clichéd situations. The screw-up, the good kid, the princess, the absent father, the ignored mother, and the successful kid who puts it all to paper. This is every crappy family movie crossed with Woody Allen's Deconstructing Harry...minus the snark, bite, or reason. The father's speech at the end telling everybody that they are responsible for their own misery is the only change from this formula.

The movie is hollow. And, maybe that's the point. Maybe the writer is bitter about all the other family dysfunction films that send the blame up the chain. And, so he made a film that was as hollow as he felt the other movies to be, with the father being the writer's voice saying "you guys are your own problems." But, if this IS the case, this sort of po-mo response doesn't make it a good movie...or, for that matter, an entertaining one.

That's not to say this movie is completely terrible. It does have fleeting flashes of actual humor, mainly involving Leslie Ann Warren as the ignored mother and Taraji P. Henson as the screw-up's doting girlfriend, both of whom are criminally underused. But, as I said, they're fleeting flashes of humor with the rest of the film's humor being empty.

Skip it.

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A dark comedy about a very dysfunctional family. Really good and funny, just missing something to make it better. I say B
cosmo_tiger17 July 2011
"Pardon me if I don't toast the man who ruined my life." After a book exposing all his families secrets is published and becomes a hit Nathan must deal with the fallout. The fact that his brothers and sister now hate him, his dad he is completely self obsessed is the only one who is proud of him. The movie takes place the day of the annual birthday dinner for their dad's birthday and we watch how each person deals with the stress of that as well as the book release. Judging by the preview I was expecting this to be funnier then it was. I'm not saying this was not a good movie, but I was expecting funnier. I did enjoy it, and the movie was perfectly cast I thought, but I just thought it was missing something to make it better. Watching each person deal with their own personal problems set against the way they feel about the book is enjoyable to watch, but again something was missing. I'm just not sure what. Overall, I really did enjoy this, but it could have used something else, I just can't figure out what it is. I give it a B.

Would I watch again? - I don't think I will.

*Also try - Everybody's Fine
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Annoyingly Awful
jsn-987-16823626 February 2011
Among the worst films of the year. It's a complete rip off of Arrested Development with much worse writing. It's rarely funny and only in a superficial sitcom sort of way. The characters are predictable and unauthentic. It gets worse as it develops toward the culminating "dinner scene" where the script actually attempts to go serious and sad. It's rather difficult to make your audience feel empathy for characters that are laughably bogus within a superficial storyline. The writer and director should chose different careers. I will never waste my $10 on any film I see them a part of in the future. Unfortunately, the many decent actors, especially Sarah Silverman have tainted their careers in this aberration and abomination of a production. Save your money and time and watch TV or go make love to your husband or wife. Jesus, when am I going to write enough of lines to satisfy the review requirements. In case you hadn't gotten the gist, Peep World is not worth wasting any more words for.
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bulldogg10669 November 2011
After watching this film, I had one question: why was it made? This is an absolutely terrible film. There were some talented actors in the film but they must have been financially desperate to have appeared in it. All attempts at humor was sexually crude material that 14 year old boys might enjoy, but most adults would find ridiculous. I have seen the same plot in a dozen films but this is the worst example ever. I can understand how someone with no talent could write such an awful screenplay, but I don't understand how anyone could have been convinced to spend the money to make it. If you have an opportunity to see this film, please do. See how much you can take before turning it off.
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"Everything I Wrote in Peep World Is True"
jtsmithering198312 August 2013
This film is not that difficult to figure out, except for the simple minded. I've read several reviews, and all of the negative critiques are apparently written by those movie goes seeking more obvious plot themes. As if it were Sesame street spelling it out to them.

For me, I found this movie to be one of the best that I've ever seen. Why? Because it was real. One reviewer had mentioned it was hard to relate to as the contents of the 'Book' were never revealed. However, the Antagonist had stated in the movie that, "Everything I wrote in Peep World is true". Each family member and all of the darkest parts of them are revealed as soon as the movie starts. That's his book. We know exactly what he wrote just by watching the movie. The broke black sheep, the eccentric, over-dramatic sister, the absent father, and the porn addicted brother. It's all there and the entire book is revealed throughout the acting of an AWESOME cast. This is portrayed brilliantly from the get go.

The entire Plot of this movie is, Truth Hurts. Each character, each sibling especially, portrays a theme of how they react to the truth of themselves revealed to the entire public in written form of a book their baby brother wrote. This movie is very honest, well written, well directed, and deals with the realism of human nature in a dysfunctional family environment. Best part of the movie is the Dad's monologue. The big climax, the reveal. That it's all true. The dysfunction. That's what this movie reveals in all. This world, this country especially, is all about avoiding the dysfunction of ourselves and the ability to point fingers at the other person. If they keep making movies like this, maybe something good in this world will happen. Maybe people will pay more attention to themselves.
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nogodnomasters15 December 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Nathan(Ben Schwartz) has written a novel based on his dysfunctional family to the dismay of his family. The main characters are whimsically introduced by Lewis Black doing narration. The problem with the introduction is that when things become dramatic, you don't feel connected to the characters, you just wish the scene would be over so the film could move on to something funny.

Nathan, this generation's John Irving, has his own premature issue. Sarah Silverman stars as his sister Cheri who is so upset by her portrayal as a B---- in the book, she is suing her brother. To add insult to injury, they are filming the movie about the book outside her apartment and her 70 year old dad is dating the actress playing her character. Of yes, Cheri is an actress too. This is the kind of irony the movie needed more of, and less of the serious stuff.

Nathan gives us some truisms, such as when his assistant says, "So that's why guys get laid." Nathan responds, "That's why guys do everything."

The movie had some funny scenes and not so funny scenes. I liked it when Silverman was on the screen. Lesley Ann Warren, who looks great, plays the mom in an under utilized role. Recent Academy Award winner Octavia Spencer had a minor role. Nathan's two brothers are Joel (Rainn Wilson) an attorney who is considered a loser and face it, the guy doesn't have his life together and Jack (Michael C. Hall) who frequents peep shows.

F-bombs, brief sex, no nudity
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Wasted talent
john3293516 March 2015
Warning: Spoilers
We have another entry in the competition for worst movie I have seen this year.

The cast is quite good but the story reveals nothing new (or funny) to the audience. (Hint - the movie contains a narrator telling me that the powers to be also felt something was missing and needed help to reach the audience.) So here is what the movie gives us in the way of clichés. Families don't always get along - but come together in a crisis. Check. Families have quirky characters. Check. Children disappoint their parents and parents disappoint their children. Check and check.

There are a couple of jokes that land but mostly they do not. The movie then further confuses the story by throwing in true husband-wife conflict which unrealistically resolves itself very quickly.

Here, a rich and absent father has 4 children, none who measure up to his expectations and who are fighting amongst themselves about the family's dysfunctionality as revealed in the youngest son's popular book. The book which is the center of the movie is never discussed in an revealing detail nor are of the embarrassing revelations contained in it. Here is where the comedy could have blossomed as these revelations could have given us an insight into the characters far greater than the one liner assessments offered up my dad - "princess," "failure" and "loser." This movie just blatantly misses the mark on giving us anything worth watching.

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The surfacing of truth is a painful process.
suite9226 July 2014
Warning: Spoilers
Henry Meyerwitz has four grown children: Jack, the architect; Joel, the lawyer who took 8 times to pass the bar exam; Cheri, the failed artist/actress; Nathan, the writer, who is seven years younger than Cheri. Henry is distant and imperious. Jack is tasked each year with paying for an expensive dinner in honor of Henry's birthday.

By Henry's seventieth birthday, family relations have gone from being tense and dysfunctional to harsh and confrontational. The main reason for this change is the wide success of Nathan's book Peep World, which is more than a bit too biographical for the comfort of Cheri, Joel, and Jack. To make things worse, Jack's business and revenue have shrunk, Joel's legal career is at a snail's pace, and Cheri's career is going nowhere. The topper is that Henry has a new girl friend Amy, who is the actress that plays Cheri in the film of Nathan's book.

In the hours leading up to the seventieth birthday dinner, the slow burns of the principal characters are exposed. At the dinner, they burst out, capped by Henry's speech returning all their fire.

Will the family gain some cohesion out of all this?


Cinematography: 8/10 Well shot for the most part; on Netflix it seemed to have some intervals of focus that was too soft.

Sound: 7/10 No particular problems, but I thought the sound could have been more of an asset to the film than it was.

Acting: 8/10 The large cast included several skilled actors doing fine work.

Screenplay: 5/10 The threads came together well at the end, but I thought the film would have been better without a narrator. Just to be clear, most of the laughs I got out of the film were from Lewis Black's expert delivery--as the narrator. The film was billed as a comedy; why should most of the humor come from the narrator's performance?
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A Middleing Comedy
ThreeGuysOneMovie18 February 2012
Warning: Spoilers
The movie opens up at a restaurant where the Meyerwitz family is gathering for the annual birthday party for their 70 year old father. This is no "normal family" and the drama begins as Mr. Meyerwitz brings his 20 something girlfriend to the dinner.

Nathan Meyerwitz (Ben Schwartz) has just released a book called Peep World where he tells all of the families dirty secrets. This offends his siblings as they are portrayed poorly in this book. Cheri (Sarah Silverman) is suing Nathan for defamation of character although Nathan's representation is true. Joel (Rainn Wilson) is portrayed as a loser, and although this is true, he is hurt by his brothers thoughts of him. Finally there is Jack (Michael C. Hall) , who's wife is pregnant, his business is failing, and has a habit of visiting a peep shop downtown, tries to keep everything civil.

The movie brings us back 18 hours before the dinner and we see what all the characters are doing prior to the dinner and then at the dinner. Without giving away too much every sibling has an issue and we as viewers get to know the characters through this process. Nathan is arrogant and self centered, Cheri is shallow and dumb, Joel is a loser, and Jack obviously has some issues. Mr. Meyerwitz is a rich dad that has not been there for his children but has financed their lives. This comedy is funny at times but mostly boring and I expected some more laughs considering the all-star cast they assembled. Peep World reminded me of Brighton Beach Memoirs but certainly did not deliver like it. The actors and actresses played their roles well but with such a thin script it would be difficult to stand out or steal the show. The movie was only 1 hour and 19 minutes which I appreciated.
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Waste of such a talented cast
saadgkhan24 August 2011
PEEP WORLD – TRASH IT ( D ) Peep world has some of the most funniest and critically acclaimed actors in it. So, for my or everyone surprise it was just shocking to see such a boring and inconsistent movie. Where is story is weak and characters are more weakest than the story it self. This movie stands alone on very thin script. The direction and editing of the movie is awful. All I can sat that it's a Waste of such a talented cast Michael C. Hall, Rainn Wilson, Ben Schwartz, Kate Mara, Alicia Witt, Octavia Spencer, Taraji P. Henson, Stephen Tobolowsky, and Sarah Silverman. It's hard to imagine how someone can come up with such a terrible screenplay and characterization. It's dreadful and waste of Time and Mind!
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A true comedy that you don't have to hold up a mirror for
napierslogs28 August 2011
"Peep World" is a peek into a world of a dysfunctional family. It's a dysfunctional family comedy and it's funny. Henry had four children, even though he really shouldn't have had any, and they all pretty much hate each other and him. This movie is set on one particular day: Henry's birthday, and right after the youngest sibling, Nathan (Ben Schwartz), wrote a best-selling book revealing the family's secrets.

I consider it better than most dysfunctional family dramedies because this isn't a drama-comedy, it's pure comedy and it is hilarious. There is a moment of self-realization for most of the characters near the end that comes awfully close to melodrama that probably would have been better left on the cutting-room floor, but it doesn't really affect the many moments of brilliant, cutting humour.

Another reviewer had mentioned that the one thing he liked about the movie is that the characters seemed like real people. Oddly enough, one of the many things that I liked about the movie is that the characters were nothing like real people. They are all rich, privileged, fundamentally screwed-up fools who are completely clueless and selfish. At no point do I even have to consider comparing myself to them. When Nathan declares that his book requires America to hold up a mirror — that is a joke for the audience to get.

It has an all-star cast who, for the most part, are acting outside of their standard roles. Rainn Wilson is not playing the dweeby loser he usually does, but he is trying to get his life together again after going to rehab three times. Don't expect Sarah Silverman to break out into her stand-up routine, she's busy fretting over her father's new, young girlfriend. Michael C. Hall is basically playing the straight-man, but every character is messed up in some way. Judy Greer plays the one serious role in the movie and that is a very welcomed change for her. Kate Mara stood out for me as she held her own against the star (Schwartz) and mastered the subtle reactions to his many comedic and chauvinistic mishaps.

Lewis Black narrates all the characters and their ridiculous episodes, and I can't help but laugh at everything he says. Mostly because all the jokes in "Peep World" are funny; they work on multiple levels, and usually on one of those levels, they're true.
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if you like seeing people hate each other...
MLDinTN3 December 2011
this is the movie for you. It's your typical dysfunctional family type of film. The one thing I would have liked to be included was what exactly was in Nate's book, Peepworld, that was so horrible. Peepworld is based on his family and a lot of it is true. Only a few details were mentioned. So, the audience can't understand why all the kids hate each other and their father so much. More details should have been added. The most scandalous revelation was Jack's addiction to porn.

The movie takes place on the father's 70th birthday. Jack, the most normal one, pays for the birthday party at a fancy restaurant, even though he doesn't like his dad. Joel, the loser brother, just wants money from Jack. Cheri is the kid that hasn't done much with her life. Nate is the author and most successful. So, a lot of the movie is everyone snapping and yelling at each other and having an uncomfortable dinner. It's sort of entertaining and funny at times.

FINAL VERDICT: It was OK, nothing really new. I wouldn't recommend paying to see it.
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