Private Life [2018] ★★★

At last a good Netflix film. I know I’ve expressed my dissatisfaction with their recent releases, but as soon as I saw Paul Giamatti’s name in the credits, I knew this movie would be at least decent. And I wasn’t wrong: this is a solid adult drama, very reminiscent of Woody Allen movies and featuring a pair of likable characters. Giamatti can play anything, and he’s completely convincing here as an everyman going through fertility therapy with his wife (Kahtryn Hahn). In true Woody Allen fashion, a lot of things happen, affecting their personal relationship as well as their relationship with their family. “Private Life” isn’t a morality play; it’s just a really good story about two people trying to start a family of their own. But it does raise a very important question: how far are we willing to go to make that happen? It’s this burning question, presented in everyday terms, that enables us to invest emotionally in this movie, with the help of a fine acting ensemble, which also includes Kayli Carter, John Carroll Lynch and Molly Shannon. I found it very satisfying; in fact, I think it’s one of Netflix’s best movies.

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