Richard joins CP24 anchor Nathan Downer to have a look at the weekend’s new movies including the anti-superheroism of an X-Man in training, as played by Ryan Reynolds in “Deadpool 2,” the not so literate jhoys of “Book Club,” starring Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen and the Canadian psycho drama “The Child Remains.”
Richard sits in with CTV NewsChannel anchor Erin Paul to have a look at the weekend’s big releases, the return of the ‘Merc with the Mouth’ as played by Ryan Reynolds in “Deadpool 2,” the lightly erotic and life affirming “Book Club,” starring Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen and the Canadian psycho drama “The Child Remains.”
A weekly feature from from ctvnews.ca! The Crouse Review is a quick, hot take on the weekend’s biggest movies! This week Richard looks at the return of the ‘Merc with the Mouth’ as played by Ryan Reynolds in “Deadpool 2,” the lightly erotic and life affirming “Book Club,” starring Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen and the Canadian psycho drama “The Child Remains.”
For the Johnson family “Fifty Shades of Grey” is the gift that keeps on giving. First Dakota Johnson became a star playing the book’s lead character in the film adaptation. Now her father, Don Johnson, appears in “Book Club,” a tale of four women inspired by the erotic novel to spice up their sex lives.
Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen star as life long friends at different places in their lives. Diane (Keaton) is a recent widow, federal judge Sharon (Bergen) obsesses about her decades old divorce while sensualist Vivian (Fonda) plays the field and Carol (Steenburgen), a chef who wonders if her marriage is headed for the rocks.
The pals have been getting together for book club for forty years—starting with “Fear of Flying,” Erica Jong’s controversial 1973 portrayal of female sexuality. Their lives are shaken up when Vivian brings a new book over. “Ladies I’m not going to let us become those people who stop living before they stop living,” she says. “I would like to introduce you to Christian Grey.” “Fifty Shades of Grey,” the soft core look at hard core BDSM (bondage, discipline, sadism and masochism), becomes the hit of their chardonnay soaked book club—“It says for ‘mature audiences.’” “That certainly sounds like us.”—stirring up some long forgotten desires.
Like the classic rock on the soundtrack “Book Club” is not ashamed of what it is. Predictable in the extreme, it’s a movie that understands its audience and never over reaches. Like I well-worn joke it sets up the premise, delivers a punchline and waits for the laugh. It’s comfort food, a lightly raunchy sitcom about finding love later in life. Ripe with double entendres, it’s a genial boomer sex comedy about the pleasures of listening to vinyl, connecting and reconnecting, about a generation gap and living life to the fullest.
“We’re sure not spring flowers,” says Carol. “More like potpourri,” replies Vivian. They are women of a certain age but in an industry that often ignores older women it is fun to see this quartet front and centre. Bergen wields her wit and delivery like a sabre. Steenburgen’s journey is more about her husband Bruce (Craig T. Nelson) but she brings much charm to the role. Fonda is the vulnerable sexpot, never allowing anyone to get too close (“I don’t need anyone,” she says. “That’s the secret of my success.”) while Keaton’s trademarked fluster and flap is on full display. Together they evoke “Sex and the City” for a different generation.
The men of “Book Club” are fine—Andy Garcia, Don Johnson, Richard Dreyfuss and Nelson—but it is the women, their connection and their groove that makes this movie so enjoyable.
Richard sits in on the CJAD Montreal morning show host Andrew Carter to talk about the return of the ‘Merc with the Mouth’ as played by Ryan Reynolds in “Deadpool 2,” the lightly erotic and life affirming “Book Club,” starring Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen and the Canadian psycho drama “The Child Remains.”
Fans of Adam Sandler’s patented man-child character will be pleased to note he revives it for his newest film “The Meyerowitz Stories (New And Selected).” But those not enraptured with his childlike alter ego shouldn’t write this movie off. For the most part Sandler’s new one leaves the lowest-common denominator jokes behind in favour of highbrow (ish) humour. In other words, this is more “Punch Drink Love,” less “Billy Madison.”
Dustin Hoffman is Harold Meyerowitz, embittered sculptor, former art professor and walking, talking embodiment of New York neurosis. He’s also father to Danny (Sandler), Matthew (Ben Stiller) and Jean (Elizabeth Marvel). Harold is a crusty old man, self-centered and very aware of his lack of legacy. Newly divorced Danny has moved into the Greenwich Village home Harold shares with his fourth wife, Maureen (Emma Thompson).
The film studies the strained relationships between Harold and his kids but spends much of the movie detailing the half brothers Danny and Matthew. Danny stayed home to raise his daughter, has never had a job and now feels like a failure compared to the younger Matt, a Los Angeles hot shot with his own financial management company.
When Harold takes ill his children have to reassess their feelings for their difficult dad and each other.
“The Meyerowitz Stories (New And Selected)” doesn’t have the guffaws that Sandler at his best can deliver. Instead it is dusted laughs derived from the situations and characters. At its heart it’s a story of family dysfunction populated by people who never dip into self-pity. Marvel makes the best of her few moments but it is Sandler and Stiller who deliver the goods. Both hit career highs playing toned down versions of their carefully crafted comedic characters. Adding real humanity to Danny and Matthew elevates them from caricature. By not going for the broad strokes they are able to create tender and stinging moments that are some of the best in both their careers.
Hoffman is a hoot, perfectly complimented by Thompson who has some of the film’s best lines. Of the supporting cast Grace Van Patten, Danny’s loving daughter, is a standout.
“The Meyerowitz Stories (New And Selected)” could have been maudlin but when filtered through director Noah Baumbach’s sensibility is a smart and heartwarming.
Richard and CP24 anchor George Lagogianes have a look at the weekend’s new movies, the new Brad Pitt wartime thriller “Allied,” the new kick-ass Disney princess in “Moana,” the Oscar hopeful “Manchester by the Sea” and the Warren Beatty rom com “Rules Don’t Apply.”
Richard sits in with Erin Paul to have a look at the weekend’s new movies, the new Brad Pitt wartime thriller “Allied,” the new kick-ass Disney princess in “Moana,” the Oscar hopeful “Manchester by the Sea” and the Warren Beatty rom com “Rules Don’t Apply.”
To hear Hollywood legendary Warren Beatty tell it, casting Lily Collins as the lead of his latest film happened in a blink.
The movie is Rules Don’t Apply, a nostalgic look at an aspiring actress, her limo driver boyfriend and Howard Hughes, the eccentric billionaire they both work for. There were no formal auditions for the film, just Beatty’s gut instinct and “the blink.”
“I believe very much in what I call the blink,” says Beatty. “That is the superiority of the unconscious knowledge as compared to conscious knowledge. The knowledge that when we sit and we really give it some thought, the thought we feel it is due. That thought can be misleading when we could have trusted our initial instinct, the blink. I think the unconscious has a lot more intelligence in it than the conscious.
“It was a blink with Lily. I can only say I loved the way she looked. I loved the way she sounded. I loved the way she talked. There was an integrity about her I felt I could believe in this circumstance and at the same time she looked like someone to me who Hollywood would want to exploit.”
Collins plays Marla Mabrey, wannabe movie star and “devout Baptist beauty queen from Virginia.” On the surface the twenty-seven-year-old doesn’t have a great deal in common with her on-screen character but the actress says she understood Marla immediately.
“I could relate to it,” she says. “Starting out acting in Hollywood, very wide eyed, innocent, naïve. Wanting to please everyone. Having my mom there with me. Marla was very adamant and passionate, determined and steadfast. All these things I think I was when I started.”
The actress, who has three movies lined up for next year including Okja with Jake Gyllenhaal and To the Bone with Keanu Reeves, calls working with Beatty a master class in acting. She even kept a journal on set. “I have all these tidbits of information. Things I witnessed that I can now draw on. I would have been a fool not to.”
In particular Beatty taught the star how to think differently about breaking down a script.
“Whenever we would do a scene he kept saying, ‘What are you doing? What is your action? What is your intention?’ At the beginning I read the script as someone who had never broken it down in the way he had, and I’d be like, ‘Right now she’s really emotional. She’s sad. She misses her mom.’ He’d say, ‘Show me what that looks like.’ I can’t because that is an adjective. ‘OK, put it into words. Put it into a verb.’ As soon as I started breaking down a scene based on verbs, it didn’t matter if I cried when it said ‘Marla cries,” because as long as my intention was the same as what her intention was, whatever naturally occurred, occurred. Nothing was fake. Nothing was put on. I think audiences are smart, they can tell. If something seems fake or put on they will not associate with it.
“I soaked in everything,” she says. “Even when I was tired I subconsciously I soaked in everything because I thought, ‘It’s a joy and an honour to be in this situation.’ He could have just picked someone else so I need to take in everything I can.”