The Good House

By Joanna Langfield

Any movie that lets us spend time with Sigourney Weaver and Kevin Kline can’t be all bad.

Drawn from Ann Leary’s 2013 novel, this more ambitious than it looks drama centers on the divorced Massachusetts realtor (and possible witch) Hildy Good. Things aren’t going too well for this local girl, who did make it good for a while. Her husband left her for a man, her daughters are struggling, she’s losing listings to her former assistant. The one who opened her own shop back when Hildy’s family put her in rehab. Too much wine. Now, Hildy’s trying to make it all work. And she’s figured out a way to drink when nobody’s looking.

There are a few subplots that try to divert us, but really, the story here is all about Hildy and, eventually, her hunky former boyfriend now handyman, played pretty deliciously by Kevin Kline. An actor who knows just how to add a touch of Massachusetts accent to the surprisingly alluring hippie, it’s sweet to watch him bring sexy back to the film roles for a certain age. But the action (and I do mean action) revolves around Weaver’s Good. And yes, Weaver, as always is good. Her townie who never left may have shaken off the accent (not quite sure why), but scratch the surface here and Weaver lets us know there’s a lot more to Hildy than a good house or two.

While this film isn’t as textured as the novel, once it gets going, it plays along nicely. And isn’t it nice to see a movie about mature men and women, dealing with relatable stuff? Nobody has to giggle or act cutsey here, these are people who’ve developed their own good bones of life, even if they’ve suffered a few chips in them along the way. And it’s perfectly pleasant to enjoy their company, just the way they are.