Movie Review: Your Sister's Sister (2012)

Directed by: Lynn Shelton
Rated: R
Running Time: 90 Minutes

Your Sister's Sister stars Emily Blunt as Iris and Mark Duplass as her best friend Jack. The film opens on a gathering to commemorate the first anniversary of the death of Tom, Jack's brother and Iris' ex-boyfriend. The guests are toasting Tom and extolling his saintly virtues when Jack, who has clearly not come to terms with the death of his brother, begins to tell some unflattering stories about Tom. At this point, Iris insists that Jack take his bicycle to Washington's San Juan Islands and stay in her family's lake cottage until he can get his act together. The setting is perfect. The surroundings are beautiful, but the gray Washington weather is in tune with Jack's grief.

When Jack arrives in the dead of night, he is surprised to find Iris' sister Hannah (played by Rosemarie Dewitt) at the house. After an awkward introduction, the two spend time drinking tequila and discussing Hannah's reason for seeking solitude at the cabin: she has just ended a seven year relationship with her partner, Pam. A bottle of tequila later, Jack's flirtations lead to a very clumsy sex scene between not only strangers but between a lesbian and a straight guy. 

The next morning, Iris decides to surprise Jack at the lake which leaves Jack and Hannah scrambling to hide their tryst, although at this point Hannah is unsure why. Jack and Iris are only friends, albeit best friends. It shouldn't matter who Jack has slept with, but he really doesn't want her to know.

The three settle into the visit, relaxing with some wine and embarrassing stories of Iris' romantic history. As can happen when families get together, the stories begin to take on a sharp edge and a misunderstood practical joke leads to a fight between the sisters. Their bond is quickly repaired, and we are able to see how close the two sisters are and how much they love one another. In this moment of closeness, Iris reveals to Hannah that she is in love with Jack. 

The film then takes an unexpected turn, but I'm not going to spoil it because it is worth seeing. The performances by the three actors are sincere and raw, particularly Blunt and Dewitt. I really thought the plot was going to be predictable at first, so I was pleasantly surprised (and shocked) at the twist. Your Sister's Sister explores what happens when in a moment of weakness, people can make mistakes that can effect the rest of their lives. And how deep, abiding love can lead to moments of grace and forgiveness.

Catch it now in theaters or rent it now at iTunes Your Sister's Sister.

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