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Meryl Streep is having so much fun playing an ageing rocker that the audience only barely registers that this film isn't nearly as deep as it's pretending to be. There are some very nice observations about the messy ties that hold families together, as well as the fragility of dreams, but the real draw here is seeing Streep tearing up the screen, whether she's singing rock-n-roll classics or indulging in some spirited on-screen drama with her real-life daughter Mamie Gummer.
Streep plays Ricki, who has ended up singing in a shady Los Angeles bar with her on-off boyfriend Greg (Rick Springfield) and their band The Flash. Then she gets a call from her ex-husband Pete (Kevin Kline) saying that their daughter Julie (Gummer) has fallen into a deep depression and needs her mom. So Ricki heads home to Indianapolis, where she also has to face her two sons (Nick Westrate and Sebastian Stan), both of whom feel like they've been ignored by their childish mother and don't want much to do with her. So as she helps Julie cheer up, she's dealing with her sons, clashing with Pete's wife Maureen (Audra McDonald) and wondering why she's so reluctant about settling down with Greg.
None of this is terribly complicated, but the script is by Diablo Cody, who won an Oscar for Juno and also wrote the similarly themed Young Adult. She packs the dialogue with barbed wit that slices right to the core of these characters, bringing out crisp insights and dark emotions. The character interaction is often magical, including Streep's reignited chemistry with Kline (they first sparked together more than 30 years ago in Sophie's Choice). Her scenes with Gummer have an effortless crackle of authenticity, as do her biting chats with McDonald. In fact, the only weak moments are her off-stage scenes with Springfield, who expresses himself better with a guitar in his hands.
Continue reading: Ricki And The Flash Review
The award-winning star got to have music lessons from a rock legend.
At age 66, Meryl Streep continues to add to her bag of acting tricks. For her role as an ageing rocker in Ricki and the Flash, she took a crash course in guitar playing from none other than rock legend Neil Young.
Meryl Streep stars alongside her real life daughter Mamie Gummer in 'Ricki and the Flash'
And what was his best advice? "He said crank it up to 11," she laughs. "You've got to turn it up, turn it up loud!"
Continue reading: Meryl Streep Learns A New Skill For Ricki And The Flash
Ricki Rendazzo is a rock star who gave up everything to pursue her dream of stardom. But when her ex-husband Pete asks her to visit Chicago and help their estranged, divorced daughter Julie through a difficult time, she's given a chance to make amends with the family she abandoned for a life of fame and fortune. Taking her shot at redemption, Ricki faces the music and tries to make up for lost time. Meryl Streep stars opposite her real-life daughter Mamie Gummer for the third time. They previously starred in Heartburn (1986) and Evening (2007) together.
Sometimes, the biggest life lessons are the ones learned by other people. For someone desperate to earn the fame and recognition they rightly deserve, it can serve as an important revelation to see an ordinary person have fame thrust upon them. So goes the story of David Lipsky (Jesse Eisenberg), a young novelist and writer for Rolling Stone magazine, who spent five days with David Foster Wallace (Jason Segel) over the course of his book tour. Lipsky wanted to have everything that Wallace had, but when Wallace was faced with the news that his novel had become a New York Times bestseller, his life was set to change forever.
Continue: The End Of The Tour Trailer
Ricki Rendazzo is a veteran rockstar as part of her band Ricki And The Flash. She's adored by so many people in the world apart from the people who matter the most; her family. While on tour (as usual) she gets a call from her ex-husband Pete telling her that her daughter Julie has been dumped by her partner Max for another woman. Realising finally that her presence is needed, she drops everything and rushes to her daughter's aid - though, as it turns out, Julie is far from grateful. She and her brother have been forced to spend their most cherished memories without Ricki there, with their stepmother Maureen taking on the role as a proper mother to them. Ricki's son doesn't want her at his forthcoming wedding either, so it seems Ricki has a lot of making up to do if she wants to have a hope of re-connecting with her loved ones.
Continue: Ricki And The Flash - Teaser Trailer
Mamie Gummer and Lily Rabe - 2015 Tribeca Film Festival world premiere of 'Live From New York' held at The Beacon Theatre - Arrivals at Tribeca Film Festival, Beacon Theatre - New York, New York, United States - Thursday 16th April 2015
Jennifer Aniston delivers an Oscar-calibre performance in this rather over-worked drama, which tries to emphasise heavy-handed metaphors more than the characters themselves. But it's an involving personal odyssey thanks to Aniston's honest acting, and Daniel Barnz's sensitive direction manages to dodge most of the script's more glaring pitfalls.
Aniston plays Claire, a woman who has been in continual pain, both emotional and physical, following the car accident that claimed the life of her young son. Revelling in her bitter sarcasm, she has alienated her husband (Chris Messina), driven her physiotherapist (Mamie Gummer) to despair and so enraged her therapy leader (Felicity Huffman) that she's been thrown out of the group. The only person who patiently sticks by her side is her maid/assistant Silvana (Adriana Barazza), and she's beginning to waver. Then Nina (Anna Kendrick), a therapy-group member, commits suicide, making Claire question why she's still bothering to be alive. There has to be a spark of hope there, and she decides to stalk Nina's single-dad widower Roy (Sam Worthington) for answers.
While the premise seems to set up the usual story about two damaged souls healing each other, the story thankfully doesn't go down that tired route. Instead, Patrick Tobin's script keeps the interaction prickly and unexpected, even as it layers in so much symbolism that it becomes rather exhausting. Claire's physical scarring is clearly indicative of something deeper, as is her array of cruel defence mechanisms. Thankfully, Aniston plays these scenes with a mixture of black comedy and aching sadness that makes the character thoroughly involving and only slightly likeable. Her interaction with Barraza is the heart of the film, beautifully played because their connection remains mainly unspoken. By contrast, Worthington feels almost superfluous; he sharply matches Aniston's cynicism, but is too nice to register very strongly.
Continue reading: Cake Review
Claire Bennett is struggling to get through day-to-day life despite her buffet of pills, one-on-one medical support and the Women's Chronic Pain Support Group she regularly attends. She is forced to cope with the heart-breaking break-up of her relationship but becomes deeply obsessed with the suicide of Nina Collins, another woman from the support group. In a bid to learn more about her death and, indeed, her life, she persuades the group leader to pass on Nina's address. It's then she meets her widower Roy with whom she strikes up a significant relationship, with both of them dealing with the loss of a loved one and their own brand of chronic pain. Meanwhile, Claire frequently experiences hallucinations of Nina, who slowly draws her towards normality and, perhaps, a happier life.
Continue: Cake Trailer
Among arrivals at the Target and FEED collaboration launch at Brooklyn Bridge Park in New York were 'The Hitcher' star Sophia Bush, he niece of former President George W. Bush Lauren Bush, 'Off the Map' star Mamie Gummer, 2012 'American Idol' winner Phillip Phillips and 'The Real Housewives of New York City' star Kelly Bensimon.
Thrillers don't get much more enjoyable than this one, which shifts cleverly from an issue-based drama to an intriguing mystery and finally into riotously camp mayhem. Over his career, Soderbergh has proven himself adept at all three approaches, and the way he and writer Burns morph from one to the other is so mercilessly entertaining that we can't help but smile. And the cast is having a great time playing along with them.
It starts as an expose of psychotropic drugs, as Emily (Mara) struggles with depression after her husband Martin (Tatum) is released following a four-year prison term for insider trading. Emily's therapist Dr Banks (Law) prescribes a series of anti-anxiety pills to help her, adjusting the medication until the side effects even out. But something still isn't right, and a fatal incident leads to a criminal trial. Meanwhile, Banks begins his own investigation into the case, consulting Emily's previous therapist (Zeta-Jones). But the fallout from all of this is threatening both his career and his marriage to Dierdre (Shaw).
Soderbergh gives the film a seductive tone that's irresistible, with his own gleaming cinematography and witty editing, plus a teasing Thomas Newman score. This allows the actors to create layered characters who can constantly surprise us along the way. Law holds our sympathies as a desperate man trying against all odds to get his life back, while Zeta-Jones is icy and dismissive until her character takes a lively turn about halfway in. But it's Mara who's the real revelation in a tricky role. As Emily's world seems to shift and collapse around her, she reveals an astonishing array of emotions and intentions.
Continue reading: Side Effects Review
Mamie Gummer, the 29-year-old daughter of Oscar winning actress Meryl Streep and the sculptor Don Gummer, is looking to do things her way. The actress, who made her movie debut with a part in 'Heartburn' opposite her mother, is headlining her first television series.
Medical drama 'Emily Owens M.D.' premieres on the CW on Tuesday (October 16, 2012) and has courted gentle praise for its pilot episode. Gummer seems pretty confident of her own ability, telling the Los Angeles Times, "I've been the star of my own show forever - it's just now people can tune in once a week to watch me," though maintained that the media buzz surrounding her first major show "is weird." In 'Emily Owens,' Gummer plays a shy medical student who suddenly realizes the hospital she works in is far too similar to her high school. "She was just sort of jumping around the page and at me," Gummer said of her character. "It felt like a great opportunity to carry a show for myself - to play on a bigger level." Though it's her first major television role, the actress has had plenty of time to hone her talents, appearing onstage in 'Mr Marmalade' and 'The Water's Edge' as well as landing a small role in HBO's 2008 Emmy-winning miniseries 'John Adams.'
Despite the millions of dollars that her mother commands for lead Hollywood roles, Gummer has an altogether different approach to the acting game: "I'm not going to lie to you. The last play I did in New York, I got paid $330 a week," she revealed. If 'Emily Owens' takes off, we're pretty sure her pay-packet will be considerably heftier.
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Meryl Streep is having so much fun playing an ageing rocker that the audience only...
Ricki Rendazzo is a rock star who gave up everything to pursue her dream of...
Sometimes, the biggest life lessons are the ones learned by other people. For someone desperate...
Ricki Rendazzo is a veteran rockstar as part of her band Ricki And The Flash....
Jennifer Aniston delivers an Oscar-calibre performance in this rather over-worked drama, which tries to emphasise...
Claire Bennett is struggling to get through day-to-day life despite her buffet of pills, one-on-one...
Thrillers don't get much more enjoyable than this one, which shifts cleverly from an issue-based...
Kristen is a young and beautiful girl who's just been institutionalised in a hospital for...