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Your Friends & Neighbors (1998)

Amy Brenneman , Aaron Eckhart , Neil LaBute  |  NC-17 |  DVD
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Amy Brenneman, Aaron Eckhart, Ben Stiller, Nastassja Kinski, Catherine Keener
  • Directors: Neil LaBute
  • Writers: Neil LaBute
  • Producers: Jason Patric, Alix Madigan, Philip Steuer, Stephen Pevner, Steve Golin
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo), English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NC-17
  • Studio: Polygram USA Video
  • DVD Release Date: July 13, 1999
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6305461236
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #369,762 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Your Friends & Neighbors" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Neil LaBute's second film, YOUR FRIENDS & NEIGHBORS, is a dark comedy of manners that follows two unhappy couples and their single friends through a series of emotional and physical entanglements. Barry (Aaron Eckhart) and Mary (Amy Brenneman) are a married couple plagued by sexual frustration. Their friend Jerry (Ben Stiller), a theater professor, lives with his girlfriend, Terri (Catherine Keener), who's sick of his endless bedroom banter. Added to the fold are Cary (Jason Patric), a narcissistic, womanizing doctor, and Cheri (Nastassja Kinski), a free-spirited gallery assistant. While Jerry hopes to have an affair with Mary, Terri strikes up a relationship with Cheri, leading to a host of humorously painful conflicts. Cleverly framed by scenes in which each character examines the same painting in Cheri's gallery, the film presents an unflinchingly harsh look at relationships. More than anything else, it pinpoints--with hilarious effect--the human inability to communicate. Perfectly cast and expertly acted, YOUR FRIENDS & NEIGHBORS furthers LaBute's reputation as a challengingly original filmmaker.

Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
3.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Definitely not entertaining.. April 25, 2003
by any stretch of the viewers' imagination! Director Neil LaBute does not seek to entertain, but to expose, in this morality play, I think.
There are six players in the film version of social-sexual arrogance. Initially, you view them with varying degrees of interest, but by the end of the film, you dislike all of them, some more than most.
LaBute, with slightly more budget than he had for his breakthrough debut, "In the Company of Men" (ICM), uses it wisely to attract excellent role-players, then films it well, in all indoor, and slightly claustrophobic settings. He continues his theme of the cruelty of the alpha male, to both the other sex, and his own male friends.
Although each of the actors plays well (I particularly liked Aaron Eckhart, playing against type and doing a "180" from his role in ICM, as a poorly groomed, chubby and needy husband and friend) there is no question that the film is sought out by film afficianados to observe the performance of Jason Patric.
From the opening scene, Patric makes your skin crawl at the depths of his ability to hate the fairer sex. His hold over Stiller & Eckhart's characters is resonant in the fascinating steam room scene. Patric, deliberately cruel, is self-assured enough to fall into reverie about his infliction of power in a past homosexual rape. His intensity and believability make you wonder why Colin Farrell is getting all the good roles when Patric is a far more powerful actor.
In this film, LaBute does not exceed his earlier work (ICM) but puts us on warning that he is a force to be reckoned with in filmmaking.
A caution; most filmgoers will abhor this film. My recommendation is to see it for the experience, not the entertainment.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark, comical, and disturbing August 29, 2004
By filmz
I liked this movie because it is original, and you get very absorbed in the characters. The acting is very good, the story ties together, and it holds your attention. Best of all, at least for those who appreciate dark humor, this is very comical. It is, in my personal opinion, a brilliant, well directed film.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars People will love it or hate it. January 26, 2000
Format:VHS Tape
There are objectionable, even reprehensible qualities to human beings, urban life, modern relationships, etc. What makes this film a five-star for me is 1) how these qualities are held up to the light and observed and 2) the stellar acting job on behalf of the cast. I felt uncomfortable as if I was evesdropping on these morally ambiguous urbanites. Katherine Keener, that sweetheart of independent movies is a real cold, abrupt person in this and convincingly so. Amy Brenneman was such a believable fallen robin, I just wanted to scoop her up off the screen and nurture her. I could say a ton more, but Roger Ebert sums it up perfectly in his review. You can read it and others at the movie review query engine
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Serious exploration of self-centeredness January 4, 2003
This film follows the interrelations of six "friends" as they grope for self-fulfillment, usually at each other's expense. This is a grim, often ugly exploration of selfishness, featuring characters that somehow never developed the sense of empathy or generosity that enables one human being to connect with another on more than a superficial level. They equate being happy with being in a position of power over others wherein they are able to gratify their urges of the moment. When their behavior fails to make them happy, they become more jaded and sad and convinced that happiness is only a fantasy. A possible exception is the chilling sociopath played by Jason Patric, who appears to be entirely satisfied with his reprehensible conduct. In a cast of dislikable characters, he emerges as one of the most loathsome figures I have ever seen in a film. Perhaps not coincidentally, he is also the alpha among the film's male characters.
Director/writer Neil LaBute's dialogue is sharp and telling. This is a serious and courageous exploration of the dark side of human nature.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A quirky, risque dark comedy March 27, 2002
"Your Friends and Neighbors" is a dark, risque comedy about five people who are so self-centered that their ability to have a meaningful relationship is limited, at best. The movie doesn't always work, but when it does, it's brilliant. It also suffers by comparison to writer-director Neil LaBute's much admired first effort, In the Company of Men.
LaBute contends that egocentric people are, in many ways, very much alike. In fact, he named his characters Mary, Barry, Terri, Cherri, Gary and Jerry. Such people, he says, are not only obsessed with getting their own way, but also tend to want the same things over and over again. Since no one can give them these things, they are never satisfied.
Jerry [Ben Stiller] is a drama teacher who has an affair with his best friend's wife, Mary [Amy Brenneman]. While the affair ends practically before it begins, it causes Jerry's girlfriend, Terri [Catherine Keener], to have an affair with Cherri [Natassja Kinski]. Mary's husband, Barry [Aaron Eckhart], does a lot of soul searching, which always ends in his asking, "Is it me?" Meanwhile, the totally vain doctor, Gary [Jason Patric], stirs up this brew as much as he can, because other people's flaws keep him from dealing with his own, which are major. Their stories are both funny and sad.
LaBute directs in the style of realism, which means his performers act very much as people in real life would. There are a lot of conversational pauses and blank looks to show that no one is really comprehending what others are saying. Many viewers will find this irritating. We have been brainwashed by Hollywood's glossy, perfect characters who bond with one another by tossing off witless one-lines and cliches. Or they make a short, noble speech, and everything is cozy again. Life, of course, ain't that simple.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Love Labute's work. Well done, but it made me sad about how messed up people can be in relationships.
Published 2 months ago by Olive
5.0 out of 5 stars Razor Sharp
Catherine Keener and Jason Patric are amazing here. There isn't an ounce of pretension or phony compromise in their scenes. Read more
Published 11 months ago by mr. contrarian
5.0 out of 5 stars Good grown up movie
I had to look forever for this movie. It came I scratched and still plays well even in a bluray player.
Published 18 months ago by Amazon Customer
That one word, "Neurosis", can serve to sum up the theme of this exploration into adult behavior; the traps we fall into, allowing ourselves to be manipulated, twisted and turned... Read more
Published on August 14, 2011 by G. Bowman Jr.
5.0 out of 5 stars Lacerating drama
The Bottom Line:

An intense and unsparing film from Neil LaBute, who was quite a writer/director before he did The Wicker Man, Your Friends & Neighbors is a must-watch... Read more
Published on June 27, 2009 by One-Line Film Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars With the friends like Mary, Barry, Terri, Cheri, Cary and Jerry
"Your Friends and Neighbors" (1998) is the second film by director/writer Neil LaBute and it tells the story of three couples and their complicated friendships and relationships. Read more
Published on January 30, 2007 by Galina
4.0 out of 5 stars Quirky and weird, yet I can't stop watching
Yeah, what to really say about "Your Friends And Neighbors", kind of an all star cast, and definately not what to expect in a movie. Read more
Published on January 3, 2007 by B. Stutsky
3.0 out of 5 stars The Cast is simply great but it really doesnt have a point
Your Friends & Neighbors stars Jason Patric (NARC, The Alamo), Nastassja Kinski (One Night Stand, Little Boy Blue), Ben Stiller (Envy, Duplex), Catherine Keener (The 40 Year Old... Read more
Published on November 13, 2005 by Mike Bolts
2.0 out of 5 stars Say what?
Im confused. Are we supposed to like anyone in this movie? Are we supposed to believe that these people hung together long enough to fall apart in the time frame of this movie? Read more
Published on August 3, 2005 by Justin Ratcliff
4.0 out of 5 stars A search for happiness in the wrong places...
Your Friends & Neighbors is tale about six people and their immoral connection to one another, which is based on sex. Read more
Published on January 25, 2004 by Kim Anehall
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