Set in 1981, "The Last Summer" tells the story of 12-year-old Joel Shuman's first summer after the sudden death of his mom. Joel helps his family come to terms with their tragic loss while ... See full summary »
The teenagers friends Elizabeth, her brother Jeremy, Jessica, Rick and the hothead Trey have a car wreck caused by a swarm of insects. They wake up in the infirmary of the Marquez Academy, ... See full summary »
Ralph E. Portillo
In toney Brentwood, Benjamin Fiedler prepares for his bar mitzvah; trouble is, he understands neither its meaning nor the Hebrew, and his parents (particularly his successful-agent father) are planning the most lavish party possible. Benjamin wants his dad to give him some space, so he gets an idea: to invite his grandfather, who left the family years ago and for whom Benjamin's dad has an intense dislike, to come two weeks early. Thanks in part to grandpa - and to the immediate family's love - Benjamin may have a shot at figuring out what it means to be a man. Written by
Interesting thing about having seen 'Keeping Up with the Steins' on a Sunday at Fallbrook in the Valley - there was a fieldtrip of some school that had seen fit to come see the film as a group, then hold a sort of Q&A in the lobby. Ages of the folks in attendance ranged from 12 to about 60 and over. I love being in a full theatre when going to a film, particularly a comedy as you'll get laughs out of people that become infectious and actually make seeing the film that much better of an experience.
Another interesting thing about the 'Steins' film: while Jeremy Piven and the young hero of the film are the driving characters, the lasting memories of a film-goer actually belong to Gary Marshall & Doris Roberts. The backstory of their relationship, how it affected Piven, and how they've let by-gones be by-gones while Piven clutches to his old grudges is beautifully and deftly handled by the director. Marshall delivers the father figure as likable to an audience as the characters he created on network television back in the 70's.
One more interesting thing about the 'Steins': you don't have to be Jewish to appreciate the humor, you just have to recognize the strengths and failings of every human being represented in these characters.
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