Better Living Through Chemistry

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(2014) ★★

Sky Movies Premiere: PREMIERE Friday 4 September, 12.15pm

Small-town pharmacist Sam Rockwell attends to everyone’s problems but his own. Belittled by wife Michelle Monaghan, bullied by father-in-law Ken Howard, and ignored by surly 12-year-old son Harrison Holzer.

After the school complains about the boy’s anti-social behaviour, the exasperated Sam tries to get through to Monaghan: “He painted his windows black, why are you acting so surprised?” When pill-popping trophy housewife Olivia Wilde breezes into town, docile doormat Rockwell gets a whole new outlook on life.

The worm turns on a wild cocktail of psychotropic drugs, freely dispensed from his stockroom. Rockwell’s always worth watching but, full of broadly sketched stereotypes, this suburban sitcom is as bland as its jazz-lite score.

It never comes close to the edginess of Jonathan Demme’s Something Wild, never mind Breaking Bad. Jane Fonda narrates the first half, rather pointlessly, although it allows her to make a cameo at the end.

The only surprising turn of events occurs at the son’s ‘bring dad to school’ day. Otherwise, it’s a buzz-free downer. Too much fortune cookie philosophy can be bad for your state of mind.

Certificate: 15

Duration: 92min

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Other Showings Time & Date
Sky Movies Premiere Saturday, 5 September at 12:35AM
Sky Movies Premiere Saturday, 5 September at 9:45AM
Sky Movies Premiere Sunday, 6 September at 12:35AM
Sky Movies Premiere Sunday, 6 September at 12:15PM
Sky Movies Premiere Monday, 7 September at 12:35AM
Sky Movies Premiere Monday, 7 September at 2:00PM
Sky Movies Premiere Tuesday, 8 September at 12:35AM
Sky Movies Premiere Tuesday, 8 September at 2:00PM
Sky Movies Premiere Wednesday, 9 September at 12:35AM
Sky Movies Premiere Wednesday, 9 September at 2:00PM
Sky Movies Premiere Thursday, 10 September at 12:35AM
Sky Movies Premiere Thursday, 10 September at 2:00PM
Sky Movies Premiere Friday, 11 September at 12:35AM
Sky Movies Premiere Friday, 11 September at 8:00AM
Sky Movies Premiere Saturday, 12 September at 1:45AM