This film was a nice break from SIFF and yet still fit in with the mix. Focusing on the acting, the film feels lower budget and conceptually deep. At times, Sarandon and Byrne break-down and display their human emotions. This is not something we get to see in blockbusters that the stars are usually in. Every so often, it is nice to be able to connect with the characters on the big screen and The Meddler helps to create this dynamic.
I am actually unfamiliar with Lorene Scafaria's previous film, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World. However, after this one I am tempted to go back and watch that film. This director seems capable of bringing out some amazing acting performances. My only issue whatsoever with this film is the fact that the story seems a bit cluttered. If Scafaria focused on just a few issues, the film could have truly been a masterpiece. But, instead there are a few side-stories that create a bit of confusion in the film's message. Nonetheless, this is a good film full of heart and soul.
The Bottom Line: It may seem a bit sappy, but at the same time there is a type of realism that is usually hard to create in modern cinema.
Image Credit: http://dl9fvu4r30qs1.cloudfront.net/48/5d/d923643f4cbc85bff3ded9e8b2d7/the-meddler-poster.jpg