There is something very dated about therapy in movies. Sure, millions of real people continue to see psychiatrists, psychologists, analysts and therapists, but the depiction of therapy on screen feels so, I don't know, yesterday. Or maybe it's neurotic characters that seem old hat, but either way therapy has at least become dated by association. Of course, as a genre, romantic comedy needs the occasional shrink, because it needs that convention of neurotic characters and those neurotic characters generally (and generically) need therapy. One day, perhaps, someone can rewrite the book on romantic comedy, which hasn't been adequately revised or updated since Woody Allen turned in his version thirty years ago. Until then, we are stuck with movies like Ira and Abby, which utilizes not one, not two, but at least eight therapists or analysts.

The movie even makes a distinction about the difference between therapists and analysts (therapists talk; analysts listen) and hardly features a character that isn't one or the other. There are personal analysts, group therapists and marriage counselors, doctors assigned to every stereotypically Jewish surname known to screenwriters (Rosenblum, check; Goldberg, check; Silverberg, check; etc.). While neither of the two title characters is technically in the profession, Ira (Chris Messina) is writing his dissertation in order to become a psychologist and Abby (Jennifer Westfeldt) is constantly told she should open her own practice, simply because she's so good with people.
categories Reviews, Cinematical