Ben Kalman is aging: he has heart problems, his marriage is over, he's lost a fortune after being caught cutting corners in his East Coast car business, and he's sleeping with as many women as possible - the younger the better. He's chosen his current girlfriend, Jordan, because her father can help him get a new auto dealership; she's asked him to escort her daughter, Allyson, 18, on a visit to a Boston college campus. He behaves badly, and there are consequences to his love life, his finances, and his relationship with his daughter and grandson. Is there anywhere he can turn? Written by
Michael Douglas and Danny Devito were roommates in New York in the 1960s. See more »
When my father gave me this place years ago, I used to dream about these girls. Every night, dreams, all kinds of dreams about 'em. But then I'd see them coming back after graduation. They'd come to homecomings, ballgames. They'd sit at the same tables, eat the same food. And I'd look at them and I noticed, they don't stay like this. None of 'em. They put on years and pounds and wrinkles. And I got one like that at home. So. And we can talk to each other. I know her and I'll always know her.
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Michael Douglas' character is not a nice guy. Things are not going well for this guy at all. He's a pig. And he looks like hell, disheveled, unkempt, unshaven, and -- the worst thing -- OLD! And the best thing is that Douglas lets us see it all -- every year of wear and tear.
In short, it's one of the best performances of Michael Douglas' career.
The movie revolves entirely around Douglas' character. I often don't like movies where the main character is unlikable, but there was something about this guy, warts and all, that drew me in. His level of denial? His former success? His ability to love and behave badly simultaneously? True, the supporting cast is great. Susan Sarandon, Danny DeVito, the always wonderful Mary-Louise Parker. But it's also true that they don't have all that much to do. Douglas is in just about every scene. And he pulls it off.
The one iffy part? The ending. Not the very very end, which I liked, but the place Douglas' character was left. Just a bit of a surprise.
But see it for yourself. It's worth it.
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