Life During Wartime

Synopsis: Separated from her incarcerated husband Bill (Hinds), Trish (Janney) is about to be married again. Bill is a pedophile, so Trish couldn't be more excited to have Harvey (Lerner), a "normal" father figure for her two sons. But when Bill is released from prison and the boys finally meet their future stepdad, the family is forced to decide whether to forgive or to forget. Trish's sister, the virginal, angelic Joy (Henderson), is also haunted by ghosts of lovers past. On leave from her degenerate husband, Allen (Williams), and her job at a New Jersey correctional facility, Joy unwittingly leaves behind a trail of shame and exposed secrets wherever she goes. In one of the film's most stylized sequences, the image of Joy walking the dark streets of Miami in her nightgown maintains her innocence against a backdrop of self-affliction and desire.
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Director(s): Todd Solondz
Production: IFC Films
  3 wins & 8 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
98 min

I wanted to be near him, you know...

help him adjust,

make sure that he doesn't get...


So I moved here also.


That is so... beautiful.

Ah, he's a beautiful son.

You're a beautiful father.

- And you're -

- Don't say it.

Say it.

Say what?


You look like a tulip.


I can't afford to fail, not again.

I hate failure.

[ Waiter]

More water?

And for you?

You know, I first met Marj

on a blind date.

Bill and I met on a blind date too.

- Harvey.

- Yes?

Have you ever been to Israel?

No. No.

But it's where I want to be buried.

Oh, my God.

Me too. Me too.

[ Alarm Chirps ]

Well - [ Chuckles ]

- Um -

- Hey.

Oh, my God.

You're so not my type...

but I - I don't know

what's coming over me.

Love, Trish.


-?? [ Male Chorus Singing In Hebrew..Sacred ]

-[ Boy ] ''What Does It Mean to Become a Man?

-?? [ Continues ]

-A Bar Mitzvah Speech. ''by Timmy Maplewood.

''According to my brother. Billy.

who's in college...

becoming a man means you're ready

to take on certain responsibilities.

For example. learning to stand up

for yourself and what you believe in...

even if it means everyone will make fun of you

or say what you're doing is wrong...

or just plain hate you...

and put things up on the Internet about you

that are totally untrue.

Even if it means getting beaten up.

your face smashed in...

wedgied raw and hard

or just plain tortured.

Even if it means being kicked out of school

or arrested and put in jail.

My father always believed

in freedom and democracy.

- And ifhe were alive today-

- [ Garage Door Opening ]

- [ Door Opens, Closes ]

- Hi, Mom.

[ Sighs ]

Hi, hon.

- Chloe in bed?

- Yeah.

But how come you're back so late?

It's after midnight.

Oh, Timmy. Timmy.


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Todd Solondz

Todd Solondz (born October 15, 1959) is an American independent film screenwriter and director known for his style of dark, thought-provoking, socially conscious satire. Solondz has been critically acclaimed for his examination of the "dark underbelly of middle class American suburbia," a reflection of his own background in New Jersey.[1] His work includes Welcome to the Dollhouse (1995), Happiness (1998), Storytelling (2001), Palindromes (2004), Life During Wartime (2009), and Dark Horse (2012). more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Life During Wartime" STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 1 Oct. 2020. <>.

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