The Art of Self-Defense is Dark, Amusing
Riley Sterns directs Jesse Eisenberg* in The Art of Self-Defense a dark comedy that feels more intellectually funny than viscerally funny. While that first sentences feels like damning the film with faint praise, it was an enjoyable film experience and I especially enjoyed Alessandro Nivola’s** straight-faced Sensei whom I couldn’t quite get a bead on. This was one of those films that felt removed enough from the world I couldn’t fully settle in, but its artificial environment and subtle commentary and humor were well done.
The verdict: Good
Cost: $1.25 via Redbox
Where watched: at home
Consider also watching:
*Eisenberg was excellent as always; I don’t think I’ve ever not liked one of his performances.
**I also caught another excellent performance of his this year. He was Rabbi Dovid Kuperman in Sebastían Lelio’s Disobedience.
- What is your favorite dark comedy?
- Has Jesse Eisenberg ever not been the tense and introverted character?
Favorite IMDB trivia item:
Writer and director Riley Stearns trains and teaches Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.