This impressive first feature by Jill Sprecher, coscripting with her sister Karen, shows that she has an eye and ear all her own. The focus of this subtle and intelligent comedy is the experience of four office temps–played by Toni Collette (Muriel’s Wedding), Parker Posey, Lisa Kudrow, and Alanna Ubach–who temporarily bond to stave off their alienation and frustration, and each is presented as an individual, not a type. Collette’s character, perhaps the most distinctive in the bunch, also narrates, and the movie is especially good at sizing up the social atmosphere and dynamics of an impersonal firm as perceived by relative outsiders, not to mention the overall look and feel of such an environment. With Paul Dooley, Bob Balaban, and Helen Fitzgerald. Fine Arts.

–Jonathan Rosenbaum

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): film still.