Following The Humans premiere at the Toronto Film Festival, where it currently counts 85% positive on Rotten Tomatoes, A24 said Friday that Stephen Karam’s feature adaptation of his 2016 Tony-winning play will open in theaters and air on Showtime on November 24. It also dropped a trailer.
The Humans follows Erik Blake (Richard Jenkins), who has gathered three generations of his Pennsylvania family to celebrate Thanksgiving at his daughter Brigid’s (Beanie Feldstein) apartment in lower Manhattan. As darkness falls outside and eerie things start to go bump in the night, the group’s deepest fears are laid bare. Jayne Houdyshell, who played Erik’s wife Deidre onstage, reprises her role here, with Steven Yeun playing Richard, Brigid’s boyfriend, and Amy Schumer as Brigid’s lawyer-on-the-rocks sister Aimee. June Squibb stars as Momo, Erik’s mother who is wheelchair-bound and battles Alzheimer’s.
The entire film, and play, takes place in Brigid’s new, large, pipe-bearing NYC apartment which has water bugs the size of rats. The family bickers, jokes and discusses the challenges they’re weathering in their middle-class lives. Deadline’s Jeremy Gerard wrote at the time of The Humans’ Off Broadway debut, “The play’s growing darkness links the Twin Towers attack of 9/11 through the devastation of Hurricane Sandy — a prism refracting the white light of their terror into a spectrum from the evil humans inflict upon ourselves to the force of nature we cannot control.”
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Indeed, post-pandemic, The Humans has held up and we talk about its resonance 20 years after 9/11 with Karam, Jenkins and Houdyshell who came into our studio at TIFF. Take a look at that conversation above, and the trailer below: