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14 May 2015

Live! With a Great Actress: Kristen Wiig Is a Quirky Delight in 'Welcome to Me'

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Kristen Wiig in Welcome to Me. Kristen Wiig in Welcome to Me.

Alice Klieg (Kristen Wiig) wins the lottery, decides to skip her meds for a personality disorder and moves into a casino in Welcome to Me. Being a huge Oprah fan, she wants her own talk show, so she buys one from a local production company manned by two squabbling brothers (James Marsden and Wes Bentley). The show focuses primarily on her, her quirky personality traits and her love of meatloaf cake.

Shira Piven’s movie is a terrific showcase for the dramatic talents of Wiig. Yes, she gets plenty of laughs in the movie, but she goes under the surface of Alice in a performance that is as strong as her excellent work in last year’s The Skeleton Twins. Alice’s talk show is pretty hilarious, and it offers the opportunity for some great deadpan humor from Joan Cusack as its director.

Bentley and Marsden (so good in the recently released The D Train) are terrific as brothers with completely different attitudes.

Wiig has been making some interesting choices these last couple of years, mixing bigger movies with strong smaller films like this one. She’s quickly developing into one of the more reliable performers in cinema today; Welcome to Me proves that she’s willing to take some huge chances in the name of entertainment.

Welcome to Me is now playing at the Cinémas Palme d’Or (72840 Highway 111, Palm Desert; 760-779-0430).

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