One of the first films I selected for my movie-a-day project was 1990's In the Spirit, solely because it co-starred Elaine May. I love May, even though she has occasionally appeared in lackluster material (California Suite) and written and directed terrible movies (Ishtar, Mikey and Nicky). So why the May fixation? Three reasons.
1. She directed and starred in one of my all-time favorite comedies, A New Leaf.
2. She co-stars in the wonderful and criminally underrated Woody Allen movie Small Time Crooks, which she is brilliant in.
3. She co-wrote Tootsie, one of the funniest and best films in the history of cinema.
May has never been a prolific actress, so I was looking forward to Luv, which is based on a successful Broadway play by Murray Schisgal (who also co-wrote Tootsie). Luv is a four-character comedy about a pair of couples whose romances occasionally overlap; one of the themes is suicide, which brings some dark laughs to the table. It undoubtedly worked better as a play, but the movie is aided by a great cast that also includes Jack Lemmon and Peter Falk. Rating: 3/5.