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|Index||97 reviews in total|
When I read the reviews by the "experts" online I didn't want to see
this movie. However, my three granddaughters 16, 13 and 10 insisted
they wanted to see it on the recommendation from some friends. I am
happy they did. It was much better than the professional reviews led me
to believe. I would recommend that any parent or grandparent, as in my
case, take take their kids to see this movie.
I will say this about the expert reviews, they helped give us excellent seats. Sometimes I wonder if they have lost touch with what movie goers want to see. They have gotten to wrapped up in the technique of the art to be able to recognize a good movie. Maybe the courses on movie making should modify their guidelines to include what the general public considers a good movie.
When Alice (Marisa Tomei) and Phil (Tom Everett Scott) have to leave
town for an influential business trip, they are forced to entrust their
three hellion children to Alice's parents, the equally hellion Artie
(Billy Crystal) and Diane (Bette Midler). Hilarity ensues.
You watch a movie with Billy Crystal to laugh, and he doesn't disappoint. Crystal keeps in tune with the easygoing wit that made his hosting the Oscars so funny. "Parental Guidance" is a return to what made him famous in the first place: nice, funny family-friendly comedy.
Bette Midler is one of the only fairer-sex comediennes that could play opposite the scene-chewing Crystal. They make a great pair, and divvy out the laughs equally as hopelessly inept, secretly genius parents.
The script is written with a focus on the family being an audience, which is not to say the individual or the date can't enjoy it just as much. I was laughing in the first ten minutes, and it kept a steady procession of comical response.
Marisa Tomei is still a stunning beauty. She steals her scenes with unrivaled grace, no matter the movie, and here plays a mom different than her own parents. The comparison makes for a laugh in itself; especially where Crystal and Tomei interact.
There's no smut, no swearing, and no vulgarity. "Parental Guidance" is a refreshing blend of old and new that proves what made the classic laughs so great. Well done.
This was an excellent family movie, had plenty of laughs and some really heartwarming moments. Billy Crystal and Bette Midler made a great pairing, I don't know why it hadn't been done before. Crystal brings his great acerbic wit combined with Midler's warm demeanor and the great comedic timing of both makes for gold medal hilarity. Marisa Tomei is great as a new-age parent with high anxiety when it comes to allowing her parents into her automated life. Bailee Madison is a little fireball, and she is one to keep an eye on. With her innate acting ability she will have you on the edge of tears one moment and laughing till you pee the next. Madison is an absolute joy to watch and it was great to see her paired up with classic comedic talent like Crystal and Midler. The writing is fair, but luckily with such a well-placed cast you hardly notice those short-comings. This is definitely one I would take the whole family to, it's got enough for all to enjoy. I highly recommend it for the holiday season, it will have you walking out with a smile.
Parental Guidance is a pretty decent family comedy about bridging the
generation gap, and the process of re-building relationships that have
been neglected for a very long time.
It is obvious to me that neither Billy Crystal or Bette Midler get too many good movie roles nowadays, and I think you can clearly see their joy at being back in the limelight in starring roles. They deliver strong performances and have great timing, and it is a pity that the source material is so weak to begin with. The basic plot is okay with me, but some of the comedy is far-fetched and grandchild Barker's bizarre behavior is used as an excuse for comedy too many times.
I liked a couple of scenes, which deal with the pressure of constantly keeping up with the technological advances of this day and age, with Artie losing his job because he doesn't tweet or know what an app is. This is a very relevant issue and unfortunately it is lightly dealt with.
All in all, the plot is thoroughly predictable and the points the movie wishes to make are obvious to all without any hint of subtlety, but the strong acting performances saves it from being a train wreck.
"Parental Guidance" is meant to be a comedy on the generational gap in
parenting techniques but Billy Crystal completely steals the movie with
his smooth and silky talking. Billy Crystal, acknowledging that he is
the attraction of the senior crowd, embodies the fuddled grandpa trying
to understand the softness of the suburban life but at the same time
vying for his youth. As clichéd as "use your words" has become of
modern parenting, Billy Crystal is the one who uses his words expertly
and elevates the movie from being another generic family movie.
In regards to the modern methods of parenting techniques, there are two opposites of parenting presented: first, the red haired Russian shrieking "practice, practice, practice" method; and second, the soft version of baseball where no-one given out method intended so that there is no ugly competition and just good clean fun. The first type is deemed to produce uptight children and the second type deemed to produce stuttering, diffident children or children with imaginary friends. So, it is up to the grandparents to come in to the picture and sort this out. The solution of course, you might have guessed, fun in its various forms; feel good but not a real answer or revelation.
Without Billy Crystal, this movie would probably end up like every other movie in the same mold; the shrieking screaming kids running around in a McMansion with busy stressed out parents with one hand managing the kids and with the other hand managing their jobs; the parents desperately in need a change to solve their problems. Throughout the movie, Billy Crystal is relaxed and smooth talking and first provides the calmness to the dizzying hyperactivity of the family and then sparkle with his comedy to take us through the predictable second half.
Overall, it's a generic family movie but elevated by Billy Crystal. However, it's still a movie bogged down by its uninspired family dynamics.
... the suits who fired Billy Crystal at the beginning would have
tasted some bad karma at the end.
But everything in between was pitch-perfect - a tremendously accurate (if only slightly over-the-top) portrayal of multi-generational families, their dynamics, and the outcomes that can occur when folks empty their pockets of defense-mechanisms.
The plot is simple: grandparents Billy Crystal and Bette Midler (the "other" grandparents) babysit while their daughter and son-in-law go on a long-overdue mini-vacation, leaving their three intensely over-supervised children in the care of Bette and Billy, who don't much care for that type of hyper-parenting.
The delight of watching this movie is seeing how such a conventional plot will unfold with this superb cast. With humor consisting of both good writing and sight gags, with Bette and Billy and Marissa acting their hearts out, this is B-movie material brought to the top-tier in these very capable hands.
This is a wonderful confection of a movie. Go! And, for those of us from Northern California, it was great to see the San Francisco Giants play a fun supporting role. A pleasant surprise.
My expectations weren't that high and Parental Guidance failed to meet
Bette Midler got the very few good lines, but other than that I was in turns bored or irritated. Bored because Billy Crystal never shuts up when he's on-screen. Irritated because I fail to see how bratty kids are funny. It's just an old, tired cliché from every sitcom from the last forty years.
Especially annoying was Marisa Tomei's helicopter-mother character. It was a cartoon character with no redeeming qualities.
I found myself wishing I sneak into whatever was playing next door.
Marisa Tomei is my age and a bit old to be a parent of such young kids,
though she still is hot for a cougar.
Same old bathroom jokes in this movie though the request by another stall dweller for Crystal to continue his song caused me a chuckle, that's about it.
The scene of a man getting hit in his reproductive organ by a child with a bat is not funny, done a million times, and should not be acceptable in a kids movie. Reverse the genders sometime and see just how funny this is to you.
There are better kid's movies out there.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I thought the movie was a commentary on the present child-rearing methods that is so common today-- push your kids to excel-- feed them only fruits and vegetables-- let them express themselves, etc. It also seemed like it was about the changes of life we all will face in the future-- retirement, and finding a new purpose in our life; but it was a little more than that. Even though the basic storyline seemed a little formulaic, I thought it had a good message-- relax, don't take life so seriously, and have fun. There was good chemistry between Billy Crystal and Bette Midler. Billy Crystal is still very funny. It was comical to see the reactions of his character, Artie, as he encounters the grandson's speech therapist, and the baseball game where his grandson pitches ("there are no 'outs'"... "every game is a tie"). Billy Crystal made the movie more entertaining-- I wish they would have shown him more.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
We laughed so hard, so often, my sides hurt. The laughter was
eventually followed by the most poignant moment, which literally
brought tears. I respect this movie because every character is given
dignity and care. They were a kindly family with real love for each
other. There was meaning and pertinence to the dialog (even during the
hilarious airport security check). A few bits may be a tad 'hammy', yet
they support the meaning.
Story lines like this may seem banal to some--but this movie touches real life, real people. There are certain longings and yearnings we feel towards 'family'. The storyline brought these to the forefront. And myself being a grandparent, I have felt those yearnings in my own life.
Billy and Bette were perfect for grandparents. Tom and Marisa are a pleasant, believably decent couple. The story has plenty of surprise twists. The dialog has a far deeper message than might be noticed through the laughter. It speaks to our ethos as a country. It speaks to our values, similarities and our differences, our foibles and faults, and to our virtues. Then asks us to think about what we truly want for our children, or for our grandchildren.
Which is to say, the real deciding factor in enjoying this movie is whether or not the story speaks to the individual. It helps to have something in common with the characters and the story. I have very much in common -- so I loved it! And I'm going back to see it again tomorrow taking my daughter and her four grown kids!!
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