Maturity is not easy in this work by Jesse Eisenberg.
Having the best names in the cast does not always guarantee the success and popularity of a project. Sometimes, not even the fact of being very interesting in what it proposes to tell is enough to earn a place in this saturated panorama of series. But still, those who try – and succeed – are worth it. An example of this is Toby’s New Life (Fleishman is in Trouble, in the original title).
Developed by Taffy Brodesser-Akner, this eight-episode miniseries was produced and released by FX, and can be seen in Brazil streaming on Star+. A fantastic cast featuring Jesse Eisenberg, Claire Danes and Lizzy Caplan delivers a fascinating and complex dramatic puzzle about midlife crises.
Toby Fleishman (Jesse Eisenberg) is a recently divorced 40-something hepatologist who is using dating apps for the first time. Just as he begins to find the romantic success he never achieved in his youth, his ex-wife Rachel disappears without a trace, leaving him with their children, 12-year-old Hannah and 9-year-old Solly.
As Toby juggles taking care of his children, a possible promotion at the hospital where he works, and all the potential sexual partners in Manhattan, he realizes that he will never be able to find out what happened to his wife until he can be more honest about what happened to him. their wedding.
However, Toby’s story proves to be a Trojan horse for what the series is intelligently trying to tell. Taffy Brodesser-Akner applied the same procedure to her book, taking some of her concerns as a writer and journalist and selling it as this man’s drama, knowing it would attract more attention. After receiving acclaim, she was approached by several broadcasters to adapt the book into a series, which she decided to produce herself.
Toby’s New Life: layered narrative
The different layers of narrative that Toby’s New Life follows, intertwining the plots of different characters, is what sustains the series’ gameplay. You start out expecting one thing and, little by little, it reveals what’s behind it, exploring unfulfilled promises, frustrations and more problems arising from a mid-life crisis.
Through its excellent actors, who sell the complexity of these characters, an unusual and wonderful proposal is achieved, which fully justifies the sensation of a miniseries in several chapters. The direction is also notable, making good use of the camera and alternating points of view that are fundamental to the functioning of the series. Without a doubt, it is one of the best proposals of the year, even if it goes unnoticed.
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