By happenstance one day, she wanders onto a live set in L.A. and she is placed into the film as an extra. It is there that she meets a retired cop working on set, Randy Zipper (J.K. Simmons, Spider-Man), whom she later bumps into and a sweet friendship is kindled. However, whenever any man gets even remotely close to her, even something as harmless as a lunch invitation, Marnie bolts the other way and she does this with Zipper, just as she did earlier with a nice man named Mark (Michael McKean, X Files) she met at the baby shower. She's just not quite ready to end the chapter with her deceased husband.
When she finally visits Lori in New York and gets together with Joe's family, she realizes it is time to move on with her life. Now that she's finally come to terms with Joe's death and decides where to scatter his ashes, she finds herself in need of a policeman and fortunately, she still has Zipper's card and he still has some feelings for her. As Marnie goes about redefining who she is without her husband, Lori begins to see her "meddling" mom for the true gem that she is.
The Meddler is a definite labor of love and a precious film. Susan Sarandon is absolutely adorable as Marnie and, in watching the special features, you'll get to meet Lorene Scafaria's mom who actually inspired the character of Marnie. I'm very close to my mom and seeing this mother/daughter dynamic play out was interesting and entertaining. There's clearly a close bond and deep love there, but also obviously some boundary issues as the pair work out their grief over losing someone so close to both of them. The special features are really entertaining and include a gag reel and featurettes on The Real Marnie (as mentioned earlier), a making-of for the film, and also commentary with Sarandon and Scafaria, which is fun to listen to and provides a wealth of background info.
The Meddler is a funny, sweet and poignant film about mothers and daughters and their relationships, and about how people cope when they suffer the loss of someone important in their life. I applaud Lorene Scafaria for bearing her soul in this film and her mom is obviously a great lady. Both women are really good sports to allow themselves to be portrayed so candidly, both the good and the bad. I can say I watched this movie with my mom and, while we both saw a bit of ourselves and each other in the characters, we also both laughed a lot.