Sympathetic look loosely based on the relationship between tobacco heiress, Doris Duke (1912-1993) - think Duke University - and her shy butler, Bernard Lafferty. The icy and mercurial Duke fires her butler for serving a chilled cantaloupe; the agency sends Lafferty, formerly household staff to Liz Taylor and to Peggy Lee. He's an alcoholic, fresh out of rehab. He gradually becomes Duke's gay alter ego as she romps through life sleeping with young men, making shrewd decisions quickly, managing her fortune and orchids as Lafferty manages her New Jersey estate. With a wine cellar to die for, Bernard falls off the wagon. Can he pull himself together when Doris needs him?
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A nice little easy going film with some added humor. I mean laughing humor and good jokes. Not the humor of seeing Alec Baldwin in his boxers for 60% of the film, which is a tough thing to watch. Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin make a pretty interesting team in this film and both acted great. Steve Martin is added to the older stew and I am sorry to say that he really didn't fit. There was something off about him. There was some young cast members and the one that really sticks out is John Krasinski. His type of humor and acting sometimes clashes in certain films, but he fit well in this movie. A little added pleasure to the mix I guess you could say. There were smaller parts in the film played by some who seemed to not fit or act well. One example would be Lake Bell, she really didn't fit. The story line was decent but really seemed to jump around a bit and sometimes it seemed like pieces were left out or missing. The one thing that worried me about this film was the whole concept. It really leaned towards one age group. I mean they put younger blood in there to help, but it does focus on older couples. I think even though it is a good movie, they will lose a lot of viewers because of this. But overall, I enjoyed this film and you could say it is one of those Sunday afternoon sit back and watch pieces.
I was 3/4 through the movie when I finaly laughed. I was not impressed with Hollywood using Merel Streep in another movie. She's so old and wrinkely and not at all pleasant to look at. So, it took a gag factor of 50+ to get through to the funny part. Which happens to be when her costar Baldwin is naked in on her bed.
His nakedness was revolting.. grotesqu even. It will haunt me forever. But, Steve Martin saved the day by falling off his chair viewing it from the laptop.
Steve Martin plays a normal man. He comes off as a very loveable man in this movie.
The ending was lovely. Again Steve Martin pulls it all together. But, Merel Streep, is not pleasant to view in this light. I have no desire to watch it again.
At The Movies
It’s Complicated (PG) * * * *
On the Rebound!
By ROBERT WALDMAN
Cupid often works in weird ways. Director Nancy Meyers knows her way around relationships. Trust this woman to deliver another savvy look at tangled hearts in It’s Complicated, a superior romance from Universal Films now opening debates at Tinseltown (on Pender, free parking), The Fifth Avenue Cinemas, Empire Studio 12, Colossus and Famous Players Silver City cites around B.C.
Nancy Meyers (What Women Want) is to romance as Michael Bay is to action. Both directors are consummate artists and always deliver the goods. In It’s Complicated Meyers also concocts a timely, relevant tale about grown adults at crossroads in their lives. Aided and abetted by a trio of actors at the top of their game and it’s not hard to appreciate the care and creativity that has gone into this light-romantic romp that speaks volumes on today’s dating scene.
It looks like both Meryl Streep (The Devil Wears Prada) and George Clooney have hit the jackpot at the same time as each has been in three terrific, fun-filled and well-received movies this year. Perennial Oscar bound actress Streep returns to the kitchen, so to speak, after playing chef Julia Childs to graduate into becoming a restaurant owner named Jane, a middle aged Californian whose managed to carve out a nice life despite having divorced Jack a decade earlier. Alec Baldwin (Malice) comes on subtly as Jack, a successful lawyer now fully engaged to a new, younger and much sexier woman.
Prior to their break-up, which has left lasting scars, the pair conceived three children. When one of the “kids” gets set for a big graduation it’s up to the parents to attend the big event. Who can resist seeing one of their offspring get sent off into the real world. Thus the perfect opportunity lies in the waiting for this once in love pair to reunite. What follows is a classic tale of love among the ruins as both Streep and Baldwin are terrific as the star-crossed lovers who manage to give it one last try amidst a sea of conflicts and complete chaos.
Apart from watching the seeds of this “affair” grow another wrench is thrown into the proceedings. Enter Adam, a nerdy architect with a business connection who manages to further confound an already unpredictable, unscripted situation. Versatile Steve Martin (The Jerk) proves bland in the extreme as Adam, an unlikely lady’s man who against all odds ignites a connection with no telling what ramifications will ensue.
For some unusual reason Martin got top billing ahead of Baldwin in this 118 minute journey. Here the work of Martin is mild in the extreme as his character is more of a diversion to the main thrust of the story; the on again off again liaison between Streep and Baldwin and whether there is any room for sparks. Romantics won’t be disappointed as the heat gets turned up and the laughs begin to multiply as a zany situation involving families and lovers gets sent into overdrive.
One of the funniest scenes in recent memory, running a close second to Cameron Diaz’s infamous hair gel scene from the classic There’s Something About Mary trailblazer erupts during It’s Complicated further fueling the rabid hilarity. Despite all the jokes there is a serious undertone exploring the difficulties of older people finding romance, let alone love, and writer Meyers certainly has researched her subject well and deftly dissects the way modern relationships unfold. Segments of girl talk are particularly revealing and well-rounded as are the supporting cast who are spot on. Watch out for the clever musings of all the grown children, particularly John Krasinksi (Dreamgirls) who stands out as an innocent bystander of sorts.
Women and men, couples or singles, looking for a smart look at modern love with all the pitfalls and pratfalls of past relationships and baggage will be richly rewarded by attending It’s Complicated, a rather noble, honest look at love in the modern world, warts and all.
Read more reviews by Robert at www.moviereviewssite.com