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Before You Know It

Family and other embarrassments.

“Before You Know It” is a refreshing comedy, and not just because of the laughs it provided within the programming it went up against at Sundance this year. Here’s a story that’s not afraid to be silly or tender when the moment calls upon it, while focusing on a hook that’s straight out of a studio comedy—two sisters who live above a theater with their father learn that their mother is not dead, she’s actually a famous soap opera star (Judith Light’s Sherrell). It’s a noteworthy work from an upcoming dynamic duo, co-writers Hannah Pearl Utt and Jen Tullock, who have a chemistry that you want to see in more films, especially if they’re like “Before You Know It.”

Directed by Hannah Pearl Utt with a special feel for character and situational comedy, “Before You Know It” has little gems that keep it a vibrant picture. It boasts top-level on-screen in the acting talents of Utt and Jen Tullock as sisters Rachel and Jackie, respectively, as they touch upon the uniquely funny and painful moments of their situation: the loss of their father (Mandy Patinkin), but also the absurdity of getting to know their mother. With their on-screen emotional fortitude, and the movie’s ease, "Before You Know It" hums with the themes it’s most about—parenthood and responsibility. And it has a delightful performance from Patinkin, who is so delightfully nutty as Rachel and Jackie’s forever-theater-kid father that he’d be a Sundance breakout, if he weren’t Mandy Freakin’ Patinkin.

Courtesy: Nick Allen,

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Directed by: 
Hannah Pearl Utt
Running Time: 
Ayden Mayeri, Ruibo Qian, Alec Baldwin, Jen Tulloch, Judith Light, Mandy Patinkin, Hannah Pearl Utt
Screenplay by: 
Jen Tullock, Hannah Pearl Utt

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