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Please Give

Please Give“Quirky, amusing and a colourful
  window on people-watching, Please
is a joy to watch as three families
  go through a range of emotions while
  facing up to the problems of being

IN A NEW YORK APARTMENT BLOCK, antiques dealers Kate (Catherine Keener, Oscar Nominee for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role, Capote 2005, and Oscar Nominee for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Being John Malkovich 1999) and Alex (Oliver Platt: Frost/Nixon; The Bronx Is Burning) live with their sulky and disrespectful daughter Abby (Sarah Steele: Spanglish; The Lucky Ones).

Kate and Alex have bought the apartment next door to theirs, which is rented to cantankerous and outspoken 90-year-old Andra (Ann Morgan Guilbert: Grumpier Old Men; Sour Grapes), as they are looking to eventually extend their living accommodation to ease the growing pressures on their marriage, their business and their daughter's needs.

Andra and her two granddaughters, the kind and caring Rebecca (Rebecca Hall: Vicky Christina Barcelona; The Prestige) and the seemingly cold-hearted Mary (Amanda Peet: Syriana; The Whole Nine Yards), are suspicious of Kate and Alex, who are already experiencing their own problems in their relationship and are facing difficulties with their troubled daughter.

Kate is aware of her husband's complacency and at loggerheads with Abby, who cannot see anything wrong in spending hundreds of pounds on clothes while her mother gives generously to the homeless out on the street. Kate is having a mid-life crisis and is also beginning to question the ethics of buying antiques from the families of the recently-deceased to sell on for a handsome profit.

Rebecca, a radiology technician responsible for mammograms, is not having much luck with romance and has found internet dating to be woefully disappointing. But when she befriends one of her patients, the warm and optimistic Mrs Portman (the lovely Lois Smith), things are about to change.

Mrs Portman, who has been diagnosed with cancer, is keen for Rebecca to date her computer consultant grandson Eugene (Thomas Ian Nicholas), who is kind and attentive towards his grandmother. Rebecca's sister Mary, a beautician, has recently split from boyfriend Brian and has begun to stalk his new love (Rebecca Budig), whom she continually criticises. But it is not long before she embarks upon an affair that is as brief as it is unexpected.

Mary does not have a good relationship with her grandmother, whom she appears to blame for the death of their mother from an overdose, and finds fault with everything and everyone. But then Andra herself is not an easy person to please and even the gentle Rebecca, who bends over backwards to help her grandmother, isn't safe from the elderly lady's sharp tongue.

As Andra's 91st birthday approaches, Rebecca wants to do something special while Mary is indifferent. But an invitation to have dinner at Kate and Alex's apartment throws the two families together and resentments surface.

Since its world premiere at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival, Please Give continues to captivate audiences with it's A-list ensemble cast. There are some touching moments such as when Kate, in conflict with her own guilt, looks into signing up for some voluntary work and is confronted by two Downs Syndrome youngsters — a boy who encourages her to play basketball with him and tells her "You try, you fail; You try, you fail. Try Again" and a girl who has the same name as her daughter who shows concern when Kate becomes upset. And there is a poignant image of an elderly lady who has died sitting in an antique chair that Kate has bought.

Please Give candidly examines the challenges of life and death and benefits from a terrific music score. The film also features: Elizabeth Keener as Cathy; Elise Ivy as Marissa; Josh Pais as Adam; Mandy Olsen as Sales Girl; Regina Marie Healy as Abby 2; and Jason Kingsley as Jason.

Associate Producer is Stefanie Azpiazu; Music Supervisor is Dana Dufine; Original Music is by Marcelo Zarvos; Director of Photography is Yaron Orbach; Executive Producer is Caroline Jaczko; Produced by Anthony Bregman; and Written and Directed by Nicole Holofcener.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment places human nature under a microscope when Nicole Holofcener's (Friends With Money; Lovely & Amazing) quirky and light-hearted tale of human foibles Please Give debuts on DVD for 19.99 on 10 January 2011. Certificate: 15 | Running Time: 87 Minutes.

Special Features: Behind The Scenes of Please Give | Outtakes | Nicole Holofcener Q&A Clips | Theatrical Trailer.

"Quirky, amusing and a colourful window on people-watching, Please Give is a joy to watch"
Maggie Woods, MotorBar