John Krasinski (One of the mild mannered stars of The Office) picked one hell of a project for his directorial debut. He adapts a series of meta-ish short stories by the late David Foster Wallace (Author of Infinite Jest) that are nothing more than a series of anonymous men telling misogynist stories in a fractured style.
Krasinski, pulling double duties as screenwriter and director, links all the interviews through the eyes of a female graduate (Julliane Nicholson) writing a paper on the men in question. Even with her addition, the film is still essentially a series of straight on interviews - Most of them shot in the same bare room. Krasinksi shakes things up with a few cinematic tricks, like jump cuts, time rejiggering and the narrator telling the story as it unfolds on camera, but it's still an actors showcase here. They all deliver stellar performance that never rings a false note. Some of the stories are funny, others are disgusting and some strike surprising moments of emotional resonance. The only major misstep is a final five minute performance by Kransinski that comes off like a enthusiastic audition for a high-school play.
It's a small film that has a lot on it's mind. The subject matter will strike a cord with anyone that's been a miserable relationship and has asked themselves "Why did it turn out like this?"