Lady Of The Manor Review: Haunting Humor

Some comedies can win you over just by exuding the feeling that everyone involved in making them had an absolute blast along the way. It’s one of the reasons Judd Apatow was able to dominate the big-screen comedy world in the 2000s with a stock company of actors trading one-liners, why the Marx Brothers still work decades after their last film rolled out into theaters, and why some of the best comedies from Hollywood’s golden age are very often just about a handful of people talking in a series of rooms. If you build the right ensemble and turn them loose, audiences just feel the good vibes and gravitate your way.

There are a lot of good vibes in “Lady of the Manor,” the new comedy from writers and directors Justin and Christian Long, because this is a movie filled with people you probably like thanks to one past project or another. It’s a film packed with charm that can easily and happily coast on the sheer pleasantness of its cast, and that alone makes it worth watching. But the other charming thing about “Lady of the Manor” is that it never feels content to coast, no matter how likable or laid back its major players seem to be along the way. There’s also an ambition, however subtle, to this little supernatural comedy, and while it doesn’t connect on every swing it takes, that it keeps stepping up to the plate makes it all the more likable.

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