I Don’t Want to Go Out—Week of August 27

It’s like an end-of-summer fire sale this week. So many movies! All available to watch from the couch in unwashed yoga pants and Alf tee shirts. I mean, that’s how we imagine you watching these, but really, wear whatever you want. The important thing is to let us help you decide where to spend your valuable time.

Click the movie titles for the full review.

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American Animals

Upgrade

A Kid Like Jake

Book Club

Mary Shelley

I Don’t Want to Go Out—Week of August 6

What’s your pleasure? Loads and loads of new releases to peruse at home this week. There’s one powerful cowboy movie and a whole slew of badass women. Let us help you sort it out.

Click the film title for the full review.

The Rider

Revenge

On Chesil Beach

Life of the Party

Breaking In

Book Club

Screening Room: Everybody Back in the Pool!

Welcome back to The Screening Room Podcast, where H&G disagree a bit on Deadpool 2 but are more in line with their thoughts on Book Club, Disobedience, Ghost Stories and what’s new in home entertainment.

Listen in HERE.

Gray Matters

Book Club

by George Wolf

Book Club offers up a boatload of veteran Oscar winners and nominees, but limps to its final chapter as a ninety minute catch-22. So many roles for senior stars: good! What this movie makes of those roles: not so much.

Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen are Diane, Vivian, Sharon, and Carol, lifelong friends who began a monthly book club back in the 70s with the scandalous Fear of Flying.

With all four friends now comfortable in their golden years, the randy Vivian chooses Fifty Shades of Grey as the group’s next assignment. The girls are a bit hesitant at first but right on cue, Christian and Anna’s naughty romps reignite some fires down below.

Laughing at older people being sexual is beyond lazy, it’s ignorant. Thankfully director/co-writer Bill Holderman, in his debut feature, does seem actually interested in laughing more with his stars than at them.

But too many of those laughs are leftovers from every episode of Three’s Company, when Mr. Roper overhears Jack and Chrissy in the bedroom saying something like “It’s not big enough!” while we know they were just trying to hang a curtain rod the whole time! Ribaldry!

While the ladies juggle possible boyfriends (Richard Dreyfuss, Andy Garcia, Don Johnson) and a disinterested husband (Craig T. Nelson), contrived antics and double entendres go straight to the unfunny bone.

If you were checking off boxes, all the rich, white characters and romantic fantasies would seem like Nancy Meyers material. But Book Club can’t dig any more than surface deep, and even with all this talent, it never shows the confidence in character that elevates Meyers’s best (It’s Complicated, Something’s Gotta Give).

And then, a surprisingly subtle metaphor built around the comeback of vinyl albums gives you reason to believe Holderman’s heart is in the right place here, he’s just in over his head.