John C. Reilly
Matthew Gray Gubler
Beth's mom (Molly Shannon) is delighted: "She's my baby girl! She's resurrected! It's a miracle!" she cries, which is just the first clue that something is terribly wrong. Another: Beth suddenly becomes crazy about Smooth Jazz. Scene by scene, Baena (who co-wrote I Heart Huckabees) builds a bizarro world in which deranged mailmen drive on the sidewalk, and dust-covered, dead grandpas reappear to scare the bejesus out of their kids and grandkids. Except it's not quite as crazy as it needs to be: There's something listless about Life After Beth -- it starts out as a reflection on the potentially morbid nature of grief and then doesn't seem to know where to go. Before you know it, Plaza's Beth is blood-smeared and growling and chained to a stove, a vision that's just nutty enough to be funny -- but only for about 30 seconds.