First Hit: I laughed off and on throughout this film – enjoyable.
It won’t win any Oscar tributes, nor will the Oscar winning actors get nominations for their roles in this film, and my guess is that this group of fine actors had a good time making this film.
Each of the actors Kevin Kline (playing the Florida retired Sam), Morgan Freeman (playing the, I just had a stroke Archie), Robert De Niro (playing the grieving Paddy) and Michael Douglas (playing the rich and I hate getting old Billy) were perfect for their roles.
After more than 60 years of friendship, these guys are in their 70s and the changes in their bodies and lives are more obvious. Billy wants to get the old gang together because he’s decided to get married for the first time (she’s 32). Although there has been a riff between Paddy and Billy, the gang gets together in Las Vegas to rediscover their friendship and have a good time.
For each guy there is something to resolve and this film finds a wonderful way for them to gain peace with themselves, their family, and/or their friends. The best part of this film is the way the actors were themselves (and their characters) with such ease.
Douglas is on target with beginning to process how time flies. De Niro is perfect as the guy who learns to let go, just a little. Kline is great as the guy who learns how to bring life and romance back into his life. Freeman is superb as the guy who wants to live his life on his terms, despite the warning sign of a recent stroke. Mary Steenburgen (as Diana) is sublime as the night club singing woman who helps Paddy and Billy resolve their disagreement. Dan Fogelman did an excellent job of combining today’s world and language with yesterday’s way of viewing life. Jon Turteltaub was very smart in letting these professionals enjoy their roles.
Overall: Although its subject is light, this was a very enjoyable and entertaining film.