Polly Draper wrote, directed and costars with her sons, Nat and Alex Wolff, in the brotherly love triangle comedy “Stella’s Last Weekend.” It’s a loose and chatty affair, leaning on on a lifetime of familial riffing.
Nat Wolff is older brother Jack, returning home for the last living weekend of family dog Stella, due to be put down after a celebration of her life. His younger brother Oliver (Alex Wolff) is the more outgoing of the pair, a rambunctious, slightly obnoxious teen high on his own supply of boundless energy, and excitement over his new girlfriend Violet (Paulina Singer).
But there’s a catch: when Jack meets Violet, the two recognize each other from a fleeting kiss shared a year before that Jack can’t get out of his mind. The mysterious girl he’s pined over is now dating his brother.
Over the course of the weekend, the trio of Violet, Jack and Oliver navigate their complicated interpersonal emotions, all while the boys navigate their relationship with their permissive mother Sally (Draper), and her new boyfriend Ron (Nick Sandow), of whom the boys are not fans.
The dialogue between the brothers and their mother is fast, witty and casually provocative. Sally seems to delight in being one of the boys, in their ribald jokes and party schemes, much to Ron’s chagrin. Among all the loquacious chaos, Nat steals the film with the quieter performance as the pained, soulful and deeply feeling Jack.
‘Stella’s Last Weekend’
Running time: 1 hour, 42 minutes
Playing: Starts Friday, Laemmle Monica Film Center, Santa Monica