VETERAN ACTORS SHINE
Film Review by Fiore
GOING IN STYLE is a cute movie. It’s formulaic and somewhat predictable, but it’s the type of feel good film that allows venerable actors a chance to work with each other in a light, frivolous manner, much to the delight of the audience.
Starring in GOING IN STYLE are Morgan Freeman, Alan Arkin and Michael Caine. They are three retirees who opt to rob a bank, once they learn the company they worked for most of their lives is dissolving the pension fund. Each of the characters is pension dependent, which allows Director Zach Braff (SCRUBS) to insert commentary on working for large companies, the moving of business to foreign countries (no worries, mate, Trump is taking care of that), the place of the elderly in society and the inadequacies of society and culture in taking care of its elderly. All good themes, and the all-star trio manage to convey them with just a few lines of dialogue and the appropriate look.
Old folk, scorned by the system and deciding to revolt, finally, after decades of restrictive compliance, always makes for solid comedy. Other films to tackle the topic include: STAND UP GUYS; THE CREW; DIRETY ROTTEN SCANDALS; and ANALIYZE THIS, to name a few.
While these other films had slightly different approaches, there is no denying the interplay between the stars in all these endeavors, carries the effort. Also appearing in GOING IN STYLE are Ann- Margaret, who even in advanced years manages to exude sensuality; Matt Dillon as Agent Hamer, determined to capture the old coots; and Christopher Lloyd as the trio’s lodge friend, and an older version of his “gentlemen Jim” character from TAXI.
1.1 KEY SCENES TO LOOK FOR:
1. THE OPENING BANK ROBBERY
2. THE SCOOTER GETAWAY
3. THE EULOGY TOAST
Technically, Braff depends on the behind the camera crew he used in his previous films. Editor Myron Kerstein keeps the film at just the right length; Composer Rob Simonsen provides a yeoman score supplemented with great songbook tunes. The one gaff is screenwriter Theodore Melfi. He penned Bill Murray’s ST. VINCENT; a film that had much more potential than its final version. Melfi felt the need to insert so much commentary it detracted from the comedy. Braff reigns in Melfi enough to make GOING IN STYLE more fun to watch than ST. VINCENT.
Let’s look at the report card for GOING IN STYLE:
ACTING = B
CINEMATOGRAPHY = B
SOUND/MUSIC = B
EDITING = B
LIGHTING = B
SCRIPT = C
SFX = C
ACTION = C
GOING IN STYLE provides comfort for those theatre goers traumatized recently by films filled with agendas. One knows what to expect when purchasing the ticket, and the movie does not disappoint. These types of films serve as sorbet to the summer blockbusters about to burst on the screens. GOING IN STYLE is good for a few laughs. It certainly won’t offend anyone, or cause awkward moments. It will play as well on TV, as it does on the big screen.