The Great New Wonderful

Photo: GREAT NEW WONDERFUL: Abbot Genser

The self-absorbed New Yorkers who inhabit The Great New Wonderful are an antsy lot in 2002: An aggressive entrepreneur (Maggie Gyllenhaal) schemes to crush a competitor (Edie Falco), a placid company drone (Jim Gaffigan) roils with internal rage, an old woman (Olympia Dukakis) stalls in an ancient marital rut. Working from a stagy script by Sam Catlin, director Danny Leiner uses a dainty palette of tristesse (untouched when he made Dude, Where’s My Car?) to suggest that the shadow of 9/11 makes every discontent more pathetic.

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