Movies that tell the tale of aimless New Yorkers walk a fine line. I have enough real-life friends who live in New York and don’t know what to do with their life; I don’t need to see this same story on screen. Noah Baumbach has made his career with these types of movies. Sometimes, they work for me — I’m looking at you, Frances Ha! Other times they don’t, and that’s where we find ourselves with While We’re Young.
While We’re Young pairs up Baumbach and Ben Stiller once again. He and his wife (Naomi Watts) are bored with their lives and they’re bored with their friends. When they meet a couple of young, hip New Yorkers (Adam Driver and Amanda Seyfried), it’s exactly what they needed to escape their tedious lives.
There’s just something frustrating about watching middle-aged people trying to fit in with people 20 years their junior. Maybe this is just a reflection of where I’m at in life, but it can seem sort of desperate and pathetic. That’s exactly the sentiment that this film evokes, and I think it’s the purpose. The grass ain’t always greener, etc., and no one is really happy in this world.
Baumbach completists will find things to love about While We’re Young, but it didn’t do it for me. I’ll just wait for Mistress America, thank you very much. If you only watch one Baumbach movie in 2015, don’t make it While We’re Young — it’s not worth your time.