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The setting is an upscale suburb in America, where the lives of four families become linked as their stories unfold. Esther, Glenn Close, nurses her son, Paul, Joshua Jackson, in a coma after a car crash, while her teenage daughter, Julie, Jessica Campbell, tries to come to terms with the accident that changed their lives. Annette, Patricia Clarkson, abandoned by her husband, is lonely enough to haunt bars where she tries to pick up men, including Randy, Timothy Olyphant. Meanwhile health-conscious Helen, Mary Kay Place, is equally lonely and frustrated, while lawyer Jim Train, Dermot Mulroney is unable to tell his wife, Moira Kelly, that he can't face up to his job anymore. Rose Troche merges four short stories by A.M. Homes in this attempt at a Short Cuts type film, with mixed results. Though there are some excellent performances, Close and Clarkson among them, the film strains rather too hard to link the characters, and, for example, fails to explain why Jim becomes so involved in Esther's attempt to win a car in a shopping mall contest. Scenes in which Jim's son becomes fixated on a Barbie Doll simply don't work either. It's a very uneven film, not without merit, but rather contrived and predictable.Comments by Margaret PomeranzPerhaps Rose Troche has loaded her film with a few too many characters, has edited for alienation rather than penetration, but The Safety of Objects is a film loaded with the significance of life. All things revolve around the comatose body of Glenn Close’s son after a fatal accident. There is guilt, anguish, loss and sheer agonising pain. It is an incredibly moving film with stunning performances from its numerous cast members. Possibly Troche could have made access to the various stories a bit easier by not being so rigid in the cutting room but you can understand her not wanting this to be mistaken for suburban melodrama. And possibly she could have given us more clues to the cause of Randy’s particular reason for anguish, because there are only a couple of clues that are easily missed. Ultimately it’s a beautiful, compassionate piece about the alienation, pain and confusion that are part and parcel of any tragedy.