‘Jeff, Who Lives at Home’: Audience should stay home

Nathan Fisher


Illustration: Erika Zinser

Some movies are decent, and yet, you just don’t enjoy watching them. “Jeff, Who Lives at Home” was one of those movies for me. Maybe I still have not recovered from the adrenaline rush of “Cabin in the Woods” or am spent from my differential equations midterm/zombie attack Friday afternoon, but I found “Jeff, Who Lives at Home,” like the title, bland and really not worth watching. “Jeff, Who Lives at Home” follows a day in the life of Jeff (Jason Segal), his brother Pat (Ed Helms) and their mom (Susan Sarandon). As you could probably tell from the descriptive title, Jeff, a 30-ish barely post-puberty guy still lives with his mother in her basement. Brother Pat is having trouble with his marriage; Mom cannot stand either of her man-boys, and is getting messages from a secret admirer. In the beginning of the film, nobody in the clan likes each other and all direct their anger at Jeff for not doing anything with his life. Jeff, taking hit after hit on his bong, portrays a lethargic loser who claims he is just following the ways of the universe. Jeff is fixated with the movie “Signs” (remember Mel Gibson in the corn field?), where every detail in life has a greater meaning. Maybe the moral of the movie is that there is some cosmic order and we all should just relax like Jeff and go with the flow. All in all, “Jeff, Who Lives at Home” is a well-written and directed comedy by the Duplas brothers that just did not grab me. Jason Segal’s likeable-oaf shtick worked in “The Muppets” and “Forgetting Sarah Marshall,” but seemed tired and dull as Jeff. I really did not like seeing Ed Helms, who is hysterical in the “Hangover,” movies, being so mean in this role. “Jeff, Who Lives at Home” relies too heavily on everyday events that for the most part, you got it, are just too ordinary for the big screen. With the end of the semester looming, I need and want a movie that allows me to escape to another place or burst into laughter––”Jeff, Who Lives at Home” was just not that movie.