In Our Nature is a quaint film from writer-director Brian Savelson. It stars two TV veterans Mad Men‘s John Slattery and Zach Gilford, who’s best known for his run on Friday Night Lights. The film pits them against each other as an estranged father and son. Boosted by supporting performances from Jena Malone and Gabrielle Union, In Our Nature proves to be a solid drama.

The Players:

  • Director: Brian Savelson
  • Writer: Brian Savelson
  • Cast: John Slattery, Zach Gilford, Gabrielle Union, Jena Malone
  • Cinematography by: Jeremy Saulnier
  • Original Music by: Jeff Grace

The Plot:

Seth (Zach Gilford) and his girlfriend Andie (Jena Malone) head up to the vacation home he frequented as a child. Little do they know, his father Gil (John Slattery) and his girlfriend Vicki (Gabrielle Union) are also visiting. After an awkward run-in, the quad decide to spend the weekend together. During the time, everyone’s issues boil to the surface. Living in close quarters forces them to confront the truth about each other.

The Good:

  • Simplicity: In Our Nature isn’t a loud film with lots of bells and whistles. It’s a quiet character piece that allows each actor to shine. During a time (Oscar season) where studios are bringing out their best show ponies, In Our Nature stays in its lane. It’s a great alternative.
  • Acting: The film consisted of four main players. They each brought something to the table. No one performance overshadowed the other. This cast is filled with naturals. Malone embodied the vegan, free-spirited girlfriend of Gilford’s misunderstood musician. Slattery plays a stern character with cracks of vulnerability, while Union is the nurturing center. It’s a very well-oiled machine.
  • Story: We’ve seen dysfunctional family films. But this one doesn’t set the characters up for a happily ever after. They may come to an understanding or agree to disagree. You never know how it’s going to go. The story takes a realistic approach to the strained family dynamic, which is refreshing to see.
  • The Setting: The film takes place in the countryside at an old house. It was off a lake and the characters were completely isolated. It was great because it made you feel like you were watching a play. It was very much in the same vein as On Golden Pond. There were no outside distractions. It was all about these people and their relationships.

The Bad:

  • Nothing: We thoroughly enjoyed this quiet little film.


In Our Nature is a jewel waiting to be discovered. It has great actors and a story that a lot of us can relate to. If you’re interested in something that has less style, but more substance, this is it.

The Rating: 10/10

In Our Nature opens in theaters December 7.

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Will you be seeing In Our Nature this weekend?