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ACOD 2013 ***

Writer Stuart Zicherman’s only film as a director was barely seen in cinemas, but may well build up a cult following on instant; it’s a comedy drama with a high-visibility cast and a decent premise. Restaurant owner Carter (Adam Scott) has parent issues; Lothario dad Hugh (Richard Jenkins), unbalanced mother Melissa (Catherine O’Hara) and a weak romantic relationship with Lauren (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) as a result. His dad’s new wife Sondra (Amy Poehler) owns the building that Carter’s restaurant is in, and his therapist (Jane Lynch) wants to write a book about his issues. The acronym of ACOD refers to Adult Children of Divorce, and Zicherman’s script, co-written with Ben Karlin, explores family issues with some skill, helped by an empathetic performance by Scott. Zicherman previously wrote the woeful superhero spin-off Elektra, but redeems himself with this sprightly, low-key comedy, which has enough nous about modern families to explain how a cast of this calibre were assembled. 


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