Just off the Bronx, in Long Island Sound, is a spit of land called City Island. It's an obscure place, even to New Yorkers, which probably explains how it retains the look of a quaint New England fishing village despite being part of the biggest city in America.

The movie called City Island is set there, though it could have been called anything and set anywhere. Written and directed by Raymond De Felitta, it's a merry comedy about one of those quarrelsome Italian-American families where everybody fights a lot but ultimately loves one another. In real life, I find relationships with loud, argumentative people exhausting. In the movies, though, they can be a lot of fun to watch.

There are four people in the Rizzo family, each with a handful of secrets ranging from deep and dark to shallow and merely opaque. The patriarch, Vince (Andy Garcia), is a prison guard who's been taking acting classes in the hopes of becoming a movie star; he keeps it hidden from his wife, Joyce (Julianna Margulies), because he assumes she'd think it was a waste of time. Their teenage son, Vinnie (Ezra Miller), is developing a fetish for morbidly obese women, including the one across the street. His older sister, Vivian (Dominik Garcia-Lorido, Andy Garcia's real daughter), supposedly away at college, is working part-time as a stripper. Everyone is a smoker, and everyone hides it from everyone else. Vince will be poking his head through the upstairs bathroom's skylight to catch a few puffs while his son is 30 feet away doing the same thing on the balcony, each out of the other's view.