Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Larry Crowne (2011)

Number Rolled: 98
Movie Name/Year: Larry Crowne (2011)
Tagline: Never too late in life to start living.
Genre: Romance, Comedy, Drama
Length: 98 minutes
Rating: PG-13
Production Companies: Universal Pictures, Vendome Pictures, StudioCanal, Playtone Productions, Summit Entertainment
Producer: Jeb Brody, David Coatsworth, Katterli Frauenfelder, Fabrice Gianfermi, Gary Goetzman, Tom Hanks, Philippe Rousselet, Steve Shareshian
Director: Tom Hanks
Writer: Tom Hanks, Nia Vardalos
Actors: Tom Hanks, Sarah Mahoney, Roxana Ortega, Brady Rubin, Sy Richardson, Rob Riggle, Dale Dye, Barry Sobel, Claudia Stedelin, Bob Stephenson, Rita Wilson, Cedric the Entertainer, Taraji P. Henson, Holmes Osborne, Wilmer Valderrama, Tom Budge, Julia Roberts, Pam Grier, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Rami Malek, Malcolm Barrett, Grace Gummer, Maria Canals-Barrera, A.B. Fofana, Sarah Levy, Julia Cho, Chad W. Smathers, David L. Murphy, George Takei, Bryan Cranston, Carly Reeves, Ian Gomez, Nia Vardalos, Herbert Siguenza, Ric Salinas, Richard Montoya
Stunt Doubles: Alex Daniels, Daniel Headecker, Toby Holguin, Natascha Hopkins, Brian Machleit, Chrissy Weathersby Ball

Blurb from Netflix: Laid off from his longtime job at a soulless retail giant, an average middle-age guy heads back to college, where he finds romance with a professor.

Selina’s Point of View:
I haven’t met a Tom Hanks (Toy Story, Ithaca, Captain Phillips) film that I dislike. I mean, he’s in 82 of them (two are coming soon) so I haven’t seen them all. There might be a stinker among them, I just haven’t seen it.

This film featured two sweethearts of the film industry. Clearly, Tom Hanks is one of them. Sure, females are normally the ones described as sweethearts… but Hanks absolutely deserves the title, too. Julia Roberts (Money Monster, Mother's Day, Mirror Mirror) would be the other.

When you take two titans of the industry and put them together like this, it’s almost unfair to all the other movies. Then you throw in phenomenal talents like Bryan Cranston (Power Rangers, Why Him?, Breaking Bad), Taraji P. Henson (Empire, Person of Interest, No Good Deed), Rob Riggle (How to Be a Latin Lover, True Memoirs of an International Assassin, Hell and Back), George Takei (Eat with Me, Axel: The Biggest Little Hero, Supah Ninjas), Cedric the Entertainer (The Soul Man, Why Him?, Top Five), Wilmer Valderrama (That '70s Show, The Girl is Trouble, School Dance), Rami Malek (Mr. Robot, Need for Speed, Short Term 12), Grace Gummer (Mr. Robot, Extant, Jenny's Wedding), and Ian Gomez (Supergirl, Cougar Town, The Drew Carey Show)… was there ever a question as to whether or not this film would be good?

The script could have been crap, and it still would have been a decent film. That said, the script was not crap and I really enjoyed the plot. Nia Vardalos (My Big Fat Greek Wedding, I Hate Valentine's Day, Connie and Carla) is a great writer.

Where romantic comedies are concerned, this is the single best that I’ve seen in a very long time. If not the actual best.

I can’t think of a single complaint.

Everything from the acting to the background music all seemed to really fit. The people who worked on this film were working at the top of their game. I think that’s a real testament to what working for a good director, like Tom Hanks, could be like. If things are chill behind the scenes, you can tell on the screen. You can tell because it looks like the people want to be there.

I would absolutely watch this again.

Cat’s Point of View:
I have to admit that, while I was vaguely aware of this movie before, it was largely flying under my radar. Other than knowing who the leads were, I really didn’t remember what it was supposed to be about when I started it. What I discovered was a wonderful blend of drama and comedy that was a delight to experience.

What about the romance element, you ask? Well it was there, certainly, but it wasn’t in-your-face the way a lot of romantic comedies are. This was more slanting towards the ‘dramedy’ combination.

I can certainly relate with Tom Hanks’ (Saving Mr. Banks, Sully, Inferno) character, Larry. They do say that one door closing means another will open for you – or something like that. It doesn’t make things suck any less to unexpectedly find your life turned upside down out of left field. I have been there more than once. Sometimes it takes longer than others for that other door to open.

Can we talk about this cast for a second? I was really tickled over quite a few of the actors. The talent was just packed in and was quite an eclectic mix; such as Taraji P. Henson (Date Night, Think Like a Man, Term Life), George Takei (Heroes, Money Fight, Kubo and the Two Strings), and Wilmer Valderrama (To Whom It May Concern, The Adderall Diaries, NCIS) -- to name a few.

I’m not sure that this is my favorite role for Julia Roberts (Eat Pray Love, The Normal Heart, Secret in Their Eyes), but I certainly couldn’t fault her performance. Just as Hanks’ role was relatable – I could empathize with Roberts’ character and that ground down feeling.

Hanks and, fellow screenwriter for this film, Nia Vardalos (My Life in Ruins, Helicopter Mom, Star vs. the Forces of Evil), really captured some magic here.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this film. Not only would I watch it again, but I would recommend it in a heartbeat.

Speech Available: English
Subtitles Available: English

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 36%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 41%
Metascore - 41/100
Metacritic User Score – 5.8/10
IMDB Score – 6.1/10

Trust the Dice: Selina’s Rating5/5
Trust the Dice: Cat’s Rating4/5

Movie Trailer:

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