Movies Directed by Alexander Payne (in alphabetical order)

About Schmidt

About Schmidt

Longtime Omaha, Nebraska resident Warren Schmidt (Jack Nicholson) is an ordinary old man who, finding himself retired and widowed, discovers that he had only defined himself by his job and his marriage. With them gone, he fears his life is meaningless. Eventually he decides on an impromptu road trip out to Denver, ostensibly to revisit the places of his past… read more!

The Descendants

The Descendants

I'm a big fan of Alexander Payne. Ever since his brilliant sophomore effort, 1999's Election, I've found him to be a filmmaker whose work consistently rewards viewing. Okay, I didn't totally adore Sideways, but I could still appreciate it. Payne has a fondness for exploring the petty and banal aspects of human behavior, but even in his films' more outrageous… read more!

Election

Election

Razor sharp satire about a high school in Omaha, Nebraska - director Payne's home town - where a monstrously ambitious high school student (Reese Witherspoon, who couldn't be more perfect in the role) decides to run for student body president, and a much-loved but self-righteous government teacher (Matthew Broderick) does everything he can to keep her from winning. The two… read more!

Nebraska

Nebraska

Bruce Dern plays Woody, a stubborn old man from Billings, Montana who actually believes a Publisher's Clearing House-like notice that says he's won a million dollars. He then vows to trek 900 miles to Lincoln, Nebraska, over the protestations of his cranky wife (June Squib) and put-upon sons (Will Forte and Bob Odenkirk), in order to claim his sham prize.… read more!

Sideways

Sideways

The first film I know of that can be called a "wine lover's movie", Sideways is a simply told but morally complex comedy about two fortyish Southern California men - Miles (Paul Giamatti), a stifled writer, and Jack (Thomas Haden Church), a floundering actor - who spend the week before Jack's gloomy-looking wedding to explore Santa Barbara County's wine region,… read more!