Note: This review originally ran during the Toronto International Film Festival. It is being run again in conjunction with the film's limited release this weekend. For Your Consideration opens in wider release November 22. - ed.
With his films Waiting for Guffman, Best in Show, and A Mighty Wind, director Christopher Guest took the mockumentary approach he used in This Is Spinal Tap and brought it to a whole new generation. Guest assembled a cast of remarkable talent in Guffman, including Michael McKean (with whom Guest has worked for some 40 years), Eugene Levy, Fred Willard, Catherine O'Hara, Bob Balaban and Parker Posey, and worked with the same cast (adding some new talent along the way, including the spectacularly funny Jennifer Coolidge and perfectly deadpan Jane Lynch, building an almost unbeatable ensemble of comedy.
Guffman, Best in Show and A Mighty Wind all took the mockumentary approach, dealing, respectively, with a play in a small town, an eclectic group of characters taking part in a national dog show, and the reunion of 1960s folk singers for a concert. Guest's previous three films with this ensemble worked, not just because of their mockumentary style, but because of the brilliance and energy of the cast, who worked improvisationally, with very little script. With his latest effort, For Your Consideration, Guest and co-writer Levy break away from the mockumentary mold to take a narrative approach, while still retaining the improvisational freedom that give the cast the room to make their characters their own.