Judd Altman is not having a good year. First he walks in on his wife having sex with his boss, then he loses his job, moves into a crappy apartment and grows a beard. Finally his sister calls to inform him that their dad's dead.
Oh, and they have to sit Shiva.
And they didn't get along the first time around.
Based on the book by Jonathan Tropper, who also wrote the screenplay. It was generally well received by the critics and was a modest box office hit, gaining praise for the cast's easy chemistry.
This movie provides examples of the following tropes:
- Beard of Sorrow: Judd has grown one, and seems to like it, as he doesn't bother to shave once he moves on from Quinn.
- Bedroom Adultery Scene: Judd comes home early only to find his wife in bed with his boss.
- Biggus Dickus: Hilary horrifies her children when she casually mentions the size of their father's penis while people are visiting for the shiva
- Birth/Death Juxtaposition: Judd finds out he's going to be a father while sitting shiva for his Dad.
- BrotherSister Team: Judd and Wendy are the closest out of the four siblings, confide in each other about their romantic woes and have a secret hang-out spot.
- Cool Big Sis: Wendy seems to be the only one of his siblings Phillip actually looks up to.
- The Dutiful Son: Paul, who stayed in town and joined the family business. He's understandably pissed off when Phillip announces that he wants to run the business with him.
- Embarrassing Nickname: Rabbi Grodner's Berserk Button is having anyone say his, "Boner". Notably, his actual last name is said maybe once in the movie, every other time he's called Boner
- Informed Judaism: depicted rather realistically. The Altman children are surprised their atheist father's last request was that they sit shiva for him because he didn't, it was actually the non-Jewish Hilary who claimed he did so the family would spend time together, but they understand the concept with only minimal explanation from the rabbi. At one point Wendy points out that the shiva chairs are set up where they used to put the Christmas tree.
- Only Child Syndrome: Penny confesses that she can't really relate to the Altman's various hang-ups because she's an only child. Judd thinks that sounds wonderful.
- Law of Inverse Fertility: Paul and Annie are desperate to have a baby, while Judd learns that he got Quinn pregnant while they're in the process of getting a divorce
- Plot-Inciting Infidelity: Judd's misfortunes begin with him finding out his wife is cheating on him... with his boss.
- Practically Different Generations: Judd, Wendy, and Paul are all of the same generation while Phillip "the eternal baby" was born around the time they hit adolescence (given Wendy's story of her getting her period while watching him) and his parents have hit their middle-age (given the ages of Jane Fonda and Adam Driver).
- Sibling Triangle: Subverted; Annie dated Judd before she married Paul, but only for a few months and long ago, and it's clear they've both moved on. She does try to seduce him in a moment of weakness, but only because she's desperate for a baby and Judd is fertile. Afterwards, Annie apologizes and he tells her that what she has with Paul should not be risked in order to get pregnant.
- Silver Vixen: Hilary Altman as played by Jane Fonda who even has inflated breasts and her good looks while being the mother of three in their forties, the youngest in his early thirties (given Adam Driver's age), and two soon to be three grandchildren.