CAROLINE AND JACKIE

reviewed by Matthew Schuchman | Wednesday, April 25th, 2012

Caroline and JackieBlueberry Films
84 min., dir. by Adam Christian Clark, with Marguerite Moreau, Bitsie Tulloch, and David Giuntoli

There will always be exceptions — but in general, the members of a nuclear family will be close, even when one may be a troublemaker. The bond between sisters seems unbreakable in most cases; it’s something men will fail to understand. Caroline and Jackie explores the strangest of bonds in the most outrageous of circumstances. It plays games with your mind and juggles your feelings in the queen of all dinner party conundrums.

Jackie’s excitement for her sister Caroline (Marguerite Moreau) to arrive from New York is unmatchable. It’s Caroline’s birthday, and Jackie (Bitsie Tulloch) is cooking up their grandmother’s famous pot roast in honor of the occasion. Jackie even asks her live-in boyfriend to disappear for the night–so she can spend quality time with her sister. When Caroline does arrive, she has a few surprises up her sleeve. Begging the boyfriend to stay and the pot roast to be refrigerated, she reveals she’s already made dinner reservations for the three. Jarred and a little upset, Jackie lets it go so as not to ruin the night.

When they arrive at the restaurant, Jackie is shocked to find a group of her friends there to celebrate her birthday —  which is two months away. Again, not kicking up a fuss Jackie sits down and begins to reminisce with her friends, until Caroline cuts the dinner short and requests everyone go back to the house. Sitting in a circle with Caroline at its head, Jackie is introduced to the biggest surprise of the night.

Entering into a game of, “who do you believe” with the audience’s minds and emotions, Caroline and Jackie is as clear-cut as it can be, while still making the viewer question what’s real and what’s not. Similar to what Capturing the Friedmans accomplished in documentary form, Caroline and Jackie has the viewers changing their mind at every turn. As rational or irrational as one may deem the conclusion, it doesn’t matter. Between these two characters — these two sisters — all they care about in the end, is each other.

When it comes to family members, Women will always share a bond that men just don’t seem to have. Caroline and Jackie doesn’t redefine this notion, but it’s certainly an interesting exploration of a world I’ll never be a part of.

Matthew Schuchman is the founder and film critic of Movie Reviews From Gene Shalit’s Moustache and also the contributing film writer for IPaintMyMind.