'The Skeleton Twins' Review Roundup: Kristen Wiig, Bill Hader Film Earns Top Marks From Critics
The Skeleton Twins, starring Saturday Night Live alums Kristin Wiig and Bill Hader, chronicles the reunion of dysfunctional twin siblings after a long estrangement.
Both Maggie (Wiig) and Milo (Hader), whose father committed suicide when they were teenagers, enter the film making their own suicide attempts. Before Maggie can swallow a bottle of pills, she gets a phone call informing her that her gay, aspiring actor brother is in the hospital in Los Angeles. She convinces him to come live with her and her husband – whom she's cheating on – in suburban New York, where the two reconnect while wading through the muck they've created in their lives.
'The Skeleton Twins' Reviews
Impressed with Wiig and Hader's dramatic acting chops, critics have praised The Skeleton Twins, directed by Craig Johnson from a screenplay he wrote with Mark Heyman. The talented actors give the somewhat formulaic plot of the film a level of authenticity with their easy chemistry while peppering it with their natural comedic abilities.
"Wiig and Hader make this work together through their tremendous chemistry–something you’d expect, given that they were longtime “Saturday Night Live” castmates and are good friends off-camera. But this movie asks a lot of them. It asks them to navigate territory that’s both funny and dramatic, light and raw, goofy and brutally honest. And they do it spectacularly. As we enter this season of big, important awards contenders that “matter,” “The Skeleton Twins” is a small, intimate gem that might truly matter." – Christy Lemire, RogerEbert.com.
“The Skeleton Twins” is a well-written and acted movie about contemporary life that doesn’t strain for melodrama and is largely devoid of weepy soap opera theatrics. A small, precise, character-driven vignette, it has no pretensions to make any kind of grand statement about The Way We Live Now.” – Stephen Holden, The New York Times
“That bond [between Maggie and Milo] is illuminated on screen by the real-life friendship of the lead actors, who bring an at-times frighteningly believable brother-sister dynamic to the sharply told tale (written by Mark Heyman and director Craig Johnson). Their relationship veers from painfully awkward tension to moments of giddily intense emotional intimacy.” – Michael O’Sullivan, Washington Post
“The two costars elevate the film beyond formula. Their onscreen rapport is infectious and believable. Wiig has done this kind of heavy lifting with a light touch before in both Bridesmaids and Friends With Kids. Hader, though, is the film's real surprise. It would have been easy for him to turn Milo into a gay cartoon like his after-hours alter ego Stefon. But he resists the temptation to go for easy laughs and broad strokes and delivers something darker and deeper. It's a shockingly vulnerable performance, one of the best I've seen all year.” – Chris Nashawaty, Entertainment Weekly
The Skeleton Twins is currently in limited release. It also stars Luke Wilson, Ty Burell and Joanna Gleason.
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