The pseudo sequel of sorts to Happiness should not be even thought of in that
regard. I think this is why Solondz chose to make all the characters completely
different actors as a way of distancing the two films. For example, Phillip Seymour Hoffman's character in the original is now played by a Michael K. Williams. Life During Wartime is exactly what you would hope to expect if you are a fan of Todd Solondz. It's a heart wrenching, hysterical, uncomfortable film which follows a family of individuals as they navigate through the world as we know it. Todd Solondz is so good at finding the beauty in things that are thought of as vulgar and/or disgusting by the common man, and this film is no exception. The film really studies the beauty of despair and gives us insight into the human psyche when dealing with daunting emotional issues in a way only Solondz can. Life During Wartime very well could be Solondz most beautiful film from an aesthetic perspective too. It's fantastically written and features a great cast of character actors whom all do great jobs. I think the biggest surprise for me was just how much this film resonated on an emotional level for me, with a few scenes in particularly that hit me squarely in the gut. Life During Wartime once again showcases Solondz unique skill set, delivering another strong and original story.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.