Writer-director Daniel Schechter’s new film “After Class” is a character study on a family’s dynamics during a trying time in their lives, the illness of their matriarch Agatha (Lynn Cohen). The film is also a collection of subplots but it’s main focus is on a self-centered man, Josh Cohen, Agatha’s grandson.
Cohen, played by Justin Long, is an adjunct professor of creative writing at a New York City college. His unorthodox, in-your-face style of teaching gets him in hot water with his superiors. His troubles at the college, his grandmother being hospitalized and the train wreck of a relationship he has with his Italian grad student girlfriend, are entirely too much for Josh to juggle.
“After Class” also shows the interactions Josh has with his mom Diane (Fran Drescher), his father Jeff (Richard Schiff), sister Jackie (Kate Berlant) and brother David (Michael Godere). The family situations are funny, but highly dysfunctional and Josh seems to have a joke for everything that is wrong in his life.
Josh eventually understands he must relate to other people’s problems instead of always focusing on his own. In the end, “After Class” is s heartfelt comedy about the Cohens coming together through their grandmother’s illness.