Fellow Saturday Night Live sketch-comedy stars Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader balance snarky laughs with insightful drama in The Skeleton Twins, a darkly funny study of two deeply dysfunctional siblings trying to repair their relationship – and their lives – after 10 years of estrangement.

On the surface, Hader’s out-of-work LA actor Milo is the bigger screw up. Dental hygienist Maggie, still living in their hometown in upstate New York and married to Luke Wilson’s cheery Lance, is seemingly settled. Yet when Milo moves in with Maggie following an abortive suicide attempt, we quickly discover that her life is an equal mess.

The fretful duo sometimes strain the viewer’s sympathy almost as much as each other’s, but as the causes of their self-destructive behaviour slowly emerge, irritation gives way to pathos. And the actors’ skit-honed rapport is magical, not least when hilariously lip-synching Starship’s cheesy 1980s power ballad ‘Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now’ in a rousing blast of sibling solidarity.


Certificate 15. Runtime 103 mins. Director Craig Johnson.