MOVIE REVIEW: BOOK CLUB

The cast is great, and its worth the price of admission just to see these legends work their skills in one of the summers fun yet not substantial movie outings. Having a rough day? Go see Paramount Picture's Book Club, can't hurt, right? They talk about sex, have sex, reminisce about sex and complain about sex. This one won't be around award season, but it definitely can't hurt. The downside is the script. The downside is the lack of character development. They are just not there. Scratching the surface of who these women are is about all you will get, but it is fun. Book Club has good moments, and just watching these Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candace Bergen and Mary Steenburgen entertain simultaneously in one movie - is a rare event.

The story is about four businesswomen friends in their onward 60's dealing who have a book club where they discuss everything and drink wine and spend time. The current book is Fifty Shades of Grey. OK you know where this is going. Comedy ensues as they look at the problems in their own lives when it comes to sex, relationships, love. and life (think Carrie Bradshaw and the girls decades later or Golden Girls years before)

Diane Keaton's character is a widow and whose grown daughters want her to move to another state to be near them. Jane Fonda's character is a hotel owner rekindling an old love and enjoying life to the fullest with men (including Don Johnson, who by the way, is also a senior now. I know hard to believe (even though you still have him immortalized in your mind ladies, wearing a pastel blazer, sockless loafers, with flamingos in the foreground) Candice Bergen's character is a federal judge still dealing with the after-effect of her divorce and an ex-husband who's dating a young girl (so what else is new) and Mary Steenburgen, a well-known chef who is having marital problems (what else is new again.)

Overall, the PG-13 film directed by Bill Holderman is light, fun and an enjoyable simple two-hour escape. Holderman brings the best out of each of the four in their acting skills and they illuminate. All are over 65 and to watch this in action deserves kudos. This is not going to be the best comedy or sincere sisterhood tribute film but just having this movie made is worth talking about. Female power strength for a group of seniors may not leave you wanting more, but the ride is fun while you're on it - if in a very light way.

Co-writer Erin Simms and co-writer-director Holderman, do weave the lives together well but the characters are just not fleshed out enough, though the stars are able to do the very best with what they had on paper. Their timing is flawless and they all looked like they enjoyed making this movie. Seems like if they got called for a sequel (won't happen) but let's just say if they were - they would sign up immediately. These acting skills are a true reflection to each of their industry legacies. With no depth of character, we are still able to relate to their lives as the topics are ones we all understand. understand. It's about life and one understands sex life discussion, a lack of sex life today, marriage, hurt, and children. Sadly, the movie doesn't leave you with any worthwhile realizations, findings, lessons of actual mantras but then it wasn't trying to. Call it love-life-light. Kind of racy because when everyone is over 65, somehow it's funnier and racier. I wish they made more of these movies. I wish scripts focused more on those who have decades of acting chops and wish there was a place to show of said chops in a new generation of buddy movies. Maybe had Nancy Myers done this one - it might have been a bit better - but again - worth seeing veteran actresses do their thing.

 

  • PG-13

 

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