The Skeleton Twins

This award-winning US entry to the 2014 Seattle International Film Festival illustrates the long-term effects of toxic parenting. Bellingham (Washington) writer/director Craig Johnson has cleverly assembled a cast of performers known mostly for their comedy chops and put them in a deeply affecting drama...although he never forgets what they can do with a funny situation. (This review was first published in May, 2014.)

We meet a pair of estranged fraternal twins on a day they each decide to end it all. The resulting crisis throws them together for the first time in 10 years.

We watch:
  • Bill Hader ("The Mindy Project") as Milo, a frustrated actor/ writer, who realizes he "peaked" in high school.
  • Kirsten Wiig ("Bridesmaids") as his twin Maggie, a dental technician married to a really nice fellow who is ready to start a family.
  • Luke Wilson ("Henry Poole is Here") is her husband Lance, kind, considerate, thoughtful ...and maybe a bit boring.
  • Ty Burrell ("Muppets Most Wanted") is Rich, a former high school English teacher who has an unfortunate history with Milo.
  • Joanna Gleason ("Last Vegas") is the twins' mother Judy, newly arrived from Sedona with her chakra refreshed; she's ready to embrace the next trendy bit of enlightenment.
We were surprised and impressed by the scope of talent on display. The Wiig/Hader lip-sync bit was a delight and I enjoyed their little fling with the laughing gas from the dentist's office. Those only served to illustrate how well they handled the dramatic scenes. Someone said, "Tragedy is easy, comedy is HARD!" This cast can do both.
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I think you'll agree:
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