Liberal Arts is a lovely story about growing up…

Life can be unexpected and ordinarily uneventful.  Yes, lofty dreams and goals can sometimes be replaced by the mundane routine of normal existence.   Sounds sad?  Not really.   In Josh Radnor‘s Liberal Arts these themes are beautifully explored and offer a unique character study of a man searching for a connection and finding out what being a grown up really means.

Recently, I finally caught up with the television show, How I Met Your Mother and have become a bigger fan of all the leads, but I was still very impressed with Radnor’s writing and directing talent.  Who knew?  Filmed at his Alma Mater, Kenyon College, he is able to capture the hope and struggle of being a college student and, for that matter, a graduate.

This is a small, quiet film and Radnor is smart enough to surround himself with a talented cast.  Elizabeth Olsen continues to shine and solidifies her “on the rise” status.  She is natural and lovely.  Olsen easily embodies an old soul trapped in a young, inexperienced body.  Add Richard Jenkins, always awesome, and Allison Janney, in a funny small role, and the story stays engaging and thought-provoking.

It was refreshing to see a narrative that avoids the typical clichés and provides a new angle to a familiar situation.  The connection between an older man and a younger woman, has been done before but Radnor uses it as a spring-board for a larger conversation about expectations and the search for a human connection.  (My favorite scenes are the ones that show his character discovering classical music for the first time–just wonderful!)

I made my daughter watch this and it started conversations about her university experiences and her goals for stepping outside of her box and taking on new challenges.  For  that alone, Liberal Arts scores high in my book!

About nediunedited

Who is nediunedited? A lover of cinema since the age of seven! All kinds–all genres. Films (TV and Books, too) have shaped my life–they were my escape, my inspiration and even my first role models. I do not rate my films in the traditional sense (no stars, grades, etc.)–instead I give you my opinion and my take on it–I do not give traditional plot summaries either, because I want you to go in clear–ready for your own experience. There is nothing better than discovering a fine film, without any other influence. (Personally, when I want to really see something I practice media shut out–I refuse to watch too many trailers, viral promos, reviews, etc–I have been known to cover my eyes and ears in the theater during trailers–LALALALA!) That’s me–hope you come by and visit! I will definitely make the rounds and find some of you out there, too.

6 thoughts on “Liberal Arts is a lovely story about growing up…

    • Happy 2013 to you!! Trying to play catch-up on reviews–new year resolution? Do not let them stack up! 😀

      Thanks! And yes, it is lovely. Excited to see what else Mr. Radnor has in store for us…

  1. Good review. It’s a sweet and nice little film that may go a bit over-board with all of the poet talk, but still kept me realizing that this may be me in my 30’s. Yay!

    • Indeed. Believe it or not, some folks surround themselves with “all of the poet talk”–I like when she calls him a snob. (Although, I may be a snob sometimes too in certain areas.) 😀

      You could be worse in your 30s–so not too shabby!

      Happy New Year!

  2. Glad to hear that this as good as the trailer. I have been meaning to check this out and am glad to hear it will be worth a watch.

    • Indeed.

      It is nice to find little treasures…I always think this is the beginning of something–just like Nolan started with the small Memento and now he is big! These little films can be the future…who knows. 😀

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