Can actors ever be happy if they marry civilians? More than a question for gossip sites, that issue is also at the center of Henry Jaglom’s latest film, Just 45 Minutes From Broadway, which gives is a whole family of actors – unconventional, unruly, amusing (to us if not to each other). As they gather in their upstate house, lunching under the trees and discussing the theater, the film’s obvious touchstone is Chekhov. The patriarch, who came up through Yiddish theater, invokes him reverently.
But they are an eclectic group, tolerant of all sorts of theatrics. Mom is a drama queen with wild red hair. The older daughter, who has rejected the family business, arrives with her staid fiance, which is not good news for the younger daughter, an actress with a recently-broken heart. Or is it?
Based on a play by Jaglom (Last Summer in the Hamptons), Just 45 Minutes From Broadway has a theatrical frame: at times we see the family as if they are all on stage. But that has nothing to do with Jaglom’s fluid filmmaking; instead, it captures the essence of a family for whom theater and life are the same.
Here’s a glimpse: