Oren Moverman’s (“Time Out of Mind”) “The Dinner” is like a holiday meal attended only by the relatives you loathe.

Drunken uncle couldn’t come, thank God, but he sent the crazy brother (Britain’s Steve Coogan working a Connecticut accent).

The plot: Congressman Stan Lohman (Richard Gere) who is running for governor, has made reservations at the poshest restaurant in town.

This eatery is booked two years in advance. I jest of course, it’s only three months, like the movie, it only seems longer.

Here, the maitre d describes each item in detail: “winter radishes and thumbalina carrots, young winter roots garnished with burnt pumpernickel soil or gnocchi in a bed of foraged mushrooms.”

Congressman Stan has invited his brother Paul, a mentally damaged high school teacher who suffered, not long ago, a severe breakdown, but is now in the care of his attentive Lady Macbeth wife (Laura Linney).

Paul is a certified basket case who, when he was an unstable teacher, insulted, berated and scared the adverbs out of his students. To Paul, everyone around him is a “leech” or a “maggot,” except for his brother, whom he calls an “ape.”

Paul breaks things and hates everyone. He’s frightening right from scene one, and 10 minutes into his first tirade, we’re ready to get him a pizza and send him home.

Both brothers, one calm and politically ambitious, the other two steps from the rubber room, seem to be from different mothers. In fact, that seems to be at the core of all their problems.

Considering their name-“Lohman,” we might know what happened to salesman Willie’s two sons, Biff and Happy.

Coogan, a second-rate British stand-up comedian and impressionist, (co-star of “The Trip” and “The Trip to Italy”) is totally unsuited for this leading role. He is completely underwater here, and as a result, throws all the sympathy to Gere, which of course is intended, but Gere, in one of his whispering modes, does almost nothing with what he’s given.

The only sympathy here is for Gere’s long suffering wife Katelyn (a very good Rebecca Hall) who wants nothing to do with being the wife of an ambitious governor, but only wants to skip to the desert, wash down six Advil with the expensive wine, and go sleep in the car.

Katelyn will have her moments anyway.

The third woman in the film, Stan’s deceased first wife (Chloe Sevigny) comes and goes. But one I would liked to have seen play a stronger part is Adepero Oduye, (Eliza in “Twelve Years a Slave”). Gere’s aide-de-camp, who tries to keep him focused, leave these losers and win his election. With only a few lines, mostly spoken in the shadows, Oduye is so compelling, she keeps us waiting for her to come back.

Congressman Stan seems to have something involving closure in mind for this evening, involving his and Paul’s cut-up sons, even if it costs him $600 a plate. We see in flashbacks and cut ins that a homeless woman, trapped in an ATM room by two “young men,” was set afire and burned to death. This gives us hope, that “The Dinner’ will also catch fire and keep us awake. Nope.

That’s my take. You might see something I missed. Moverman’s script, taken from a best seller by Dutch author Herman Koch, (who by the way didn’t show up at the premiere’s after party, so upset was he by the adaptation of his book) is taglined with “How far would you go to save your children?”

In the final scenes, you’ll see how far one of them would go. Which one? Any bets?

J.P. Devine is a former stage and screen actor.

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