After lapsing back into alcoholism one too many times, struggling sales exec Nick Halsey (Will Ferrell) is given the sack. Things get immeasurably worse when he returns home to find his wife has kicked him, and all his worldly possessions, out onto the front lawn.
Surrounded by the wreckage of his shambolic life, Nick stubbornly sets up home outside his former property, but soon attracts the attention of the police who are eager to move him on. His cop friend, and AA sponsor, Frank (Michael Peña), however, proposes that by holding a yard sale he can camp out legitimately for five days.
While initially reluctant, Frank soon finds offloading the trappings of his failed life to be a cathartic experience, and begins to turn things around with the help of kind-hearted new neighbour Samantha (Rebecca Hall).
Adapted from the short story Why Don't You Dance? by Raymond Carver, Everything Must Go represents a rare dramatic role for funnyman Ferrell.
In this low-key, thoughtful film, he delivers a fittingly understated performance, around which debut writer/director Dan Rush assembles an interesting clutch of actors. From Laura Dern as an old high school crush, to Christopher Jordan Wallace (son of the late Notorious BIG) as the youngster who becomes Nick's right-hand man, the supporting cast are spot on.
While there are some genuinely funny moments to be found here, Ferrell also displays ample dramatic prowess, cutting an appropriately tragic figure and resisting the temptation to play for laughs.