Todd Solondz

Life During Wartime

Life During Wartime

In Life During Wartime, independent filmmaker Todd Solondz explores contemporary American existence and the nature of forgiveness with his customary dry humor and queasy precision. The film functions as a distorted mirror image of Solondz’s acclaimed 1998 dark comedy Happiness, its emotionally stunted characters now groping for the possibility of change in a post-9/11 world. Happiness’s grim New Jersey setting is transposed mainly to sunny Florida, but the biggest twist is that new actors fill the roles from the earlier film—including Shirley Henderson, Allison Janney, and Ally Sheedy as alarmingly dissimilar sisters, and Ciarán Hinds hauntingly embodying a reformed pedophile. Shot in expressionistic tones by cinematographer extraordinaire Ed Lachman, Solondz’s film finds the humor in the tragic and the tragic in the everyday.

Film Info

  • Todd Solondz
  • United States
  • 2010
  • 97 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.78:1
  • English
  • Spine #574

Special Features

  • New digital transfer, supervised and approved by director of photography Ed Lachman, with DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • Ask Todd, an audio Q&A with director Todd Solondz in which he responds to viewers’ questions
  • Making “Life During Wartime,” a new documentary featuring interviews with actors Shirley Henderson, Ciarán Hinds, Allison Janney, Michael Lerner, Paul Reubens, Ally Sheedy, and Michael Kenneth Williams, as well as on-set footage
  • New interview with Lachman
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring a new essay by film critic David Sterritt

New cover by Akiko Stehrenberger

Purchase Options

Special Features

  • New digital transfer, supervised and approved by director of photography Ed Lachman, with DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • Ask Todd, an audio Q&A with director Todd Solondz in which he responds to viewers’ questions
  • Making “Life During Wartime,” a new documentary featuring interviews with actors Shirley Henderson, Ciarán Hinds, Allison Janney, Michael Lerner, Paul Reubens, Ally Sheedy, and Michael Kenneth Williams, as well as on-set footage
  • New interview with Lachman
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring a new essay by film critic David Sterritt

New cover by Akiko Stehrenberger

Life During Wartime
Cast
Shirley Henderson
Joy
Ciaran Hinds
Bill
Allison Janney
Trish
Michael Lerner
Harvey
Chris Marquette
Billy
Rich Pecci
Mark
Charlotte Rampling
Jacqueline
Paul Reubens
Andy
Ally Sheedy
Helen
Dylan Riley Snyder
Timmy
Renée Taylor
Mona
Michael Kenneth Williams
Allen
Gaby Hoffman
Wanda
Credits
Director
Todd Solondz
Writer
Todd Solondz
Producer
Christine Kunewa Walker
Producer
Derek Tseng
Executive producer
Elizabeth Redleaf
Associate producer
Mark Steele
Coproducers
Ken Bailey
Coproducers
Andrew Peterson
Executive producer
Mike S. Ryan
Editing
Kevin Messman
Director of photography
Ed Lachman
Production design
Roshelle Berliner
Costume designer
Catherine George
Music supervisor
Doug Bernheim
Casting director
Gayle Keller

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Inside Criterion / Closet Picks — Dec 22, 2015
Life During Wartime: Wars on Terror

Life During Wartime: Wars on Terror

A fearless tragicomedy about hope, dread, longing, and forgiveness, Life During Wartime (2010) is Todd Solondz’s boldest and most haunting movie to date, carrying his exploration of Middle American malaise into new territory. As before, he probes t…

By David Sterritt

On Film / Essays — Jul 25, 2011
Ask Todd

We are currently working on a special edition of Todd Solondz’s Life During Wartime, including a supplement in which the director will answer viewer questions about his film. If you have something you’d like to ask him, please e-mail it to askto…


Mar 16, 2011