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|Index||66 reviews in total|
My wife and I saw this film without having any idea of what it is a
about. All we knew was some guy's father died and he went through a
life decision change. For all we knew that meant he could have become
gay (he didn't, and it had nothing to do with that).
This is an adult family film. It's PG-13 rating is not for nudity, swearing, or violence. It is rated that because it is a mature look at dysfunctional family problems. So while little of that is shown, they are referred to through the dialog, thus making it a mature film for teens and up.
From the opening credits of Dreamworks, the artistry of the film was evident. Instead of the usual music for the kid fishing from the moon, we hear conversations in a recording studio. In our opinion, every actor and actress gave outstanding performances. While the topic could have had a heavy handed approach, it did not. It was deftly edited and paced.
In summation, this movie was art because the content was all heart. I have deliberately avoided talking about specifics because I want all viewers to be as surprised as we were in the viewing. I give it a ten, and intend to watch it again.
This has to be under everyone's radar and that's a true shame. I can't
recommend it enough if you're looking for a truly moving film about
fractured families and fractured souls.
I was completely blown away by this movie and by every single performance. If I were an Academy member and I saw this film I would immediately place the names Chris Pine, Elizabeth Banks and Michelle Pfeiffer at the very top of my Oscar nominations lists. Honestly, everyone is just that good in these roles especially Banks. Hers is the best performance I've seen this year bar none. The movie itself is so wonderfully written and packs true emotional resonance. The plot may sound cliché but nothing is handled in a predictable or unreal fashion. Secrets are revealed and it sheds new life on family and the meaning of love. To paraphrase: what seems important now really isn't and what's may seem not important now really is there's a lot to digest about this film. One thing's for sure, if you "lean in to it" and give this movie your time and undivided attention you will not be sorry that you saw it.
You know, it's always good to see a non-action film during the summer
movie season every once in a while; even if it has an actual message to
Going into People Like Us, I was rather excited. I had a feeling that this would turn out to be a good drama. Maybe it won't be award-worthy or anything, just good as like a regular drama with a good message. After the seeing the movie, I came out feeling touched by it. People Like Us was such a good movie.
STORY: People Like Us has a very simple plot. After his father passed away, Sam, a salesman (Chris Pine) has to deliver $150,000 which was left behind by his father to Frankie (Elizabeth Banks), a sister whom he never knew about. As the relationship develops, Sam tries to re-examine his own life choices.
MY THOUGHTS: The writing/dialogue in People Like Us is believable and very good; the music score is beautiful and sets the emotional tone well; the ending to it is so touching and downright perfect that it made me left the theater with emotion. This movie does a great job talking about the loss of a loved one and trying to re-think choices in life.
The only problem I had with People Like Us was that the movie started off a bit slow, but then it gets better as it goes on.
THE ACTING: Chris Pine does an excellent job playing Sam, a guy whose father had passed away, and wants to re-think his own choices in life. Elizabeth Banks does great playing Frankie, a sister that Sam never knew he had. The ever-so gorgeous Olivia Wilde had a good supporting role as Sam's girlfriend. Michelle Pfeiffer is fantastic as the mother. The kid is fantastic as well.
IN CONCLUSION: Although slow at times, People Like Us is such a good drama featuring great performances, good dialogue, and an ending that made me feel touched.
Most of us like me have all found out about family secrets in our life,
and when they are revealed many years later they surprise us and it
does impact and affect our lives. It's so true everyone has skeleton's
in their closets. And this touching and heart felt film "People Like
Us" relates to all of those issues. It proves that in life a family
always have life altering choices to make.
The story which was inspired by true events has Sam(Chris Pine)a grown salesman who one day with his love Hannah(Olivia Wilde)gets a call in New York and the news is bad his record producer dad who he hasn't seen in years has just passed away on the west coast in L.A. Also Sam's mother Lillian(Michelle Pfeiffer)has fallen ill with a heart condition, so he takes a trip to California to have his life turned upside down.
Soon Sam will have revealed that his father had a hidden past life this was in the form of another sibling it's a half sister in Frankie(the sexy Elizabeth Banks). And Frankie who's an outspoken provocative sexy single mother has her hands full raising little one son Josh(Michael Hall). Along the way this triangle comes a bonding of friendship and love even though at times it's a struggle it's life changing for all as it's a money change for Frankie and Josh as this sexy lady can finally leave bar tending and get a good fresh path to a better life. And Sam has dropped everything after the connection so he can start anew with his true love Hannah.
Overall good film of finding out hidden special secrets, it proves love last with family as a new connection that was once secret starts a better life for all. And that's special and important because a loving family connection is ever lasting love.
KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, 15-year-old Raven Devanney shares her review
Video review available here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzovjcl38xw
People like us is a heartfelt drama about a man who's life takes a turn for the worst and in unsuspecting events leads him to a sister he never knew he had. This film was exceptional. It stars Elizabeth Banks, Chris Pine and Michelle Pfeiffer. People like us made me laugh, cry and feel every emotion in between. The visuals in this film were great and the acting was superb. My favorite character was Frankie played by Elizabeth Banks because her performance was so solid and she definitely carried the comedy of this film as well as the heavier emotions. My favorite part of this film is when Sam played by Chris Pine is getting to know Frankie and her young son because I enjoyed watching their bond grow.
It really bothered me that Sam wouldn't tell Frankie who he was until the end of the film because it just complicated their lives, but it gave the film a much needed twist. I recommend this film for ages 13 and up because of adult content and younger children may have a more difficult time fallowing along with the plot. Overall I give People like us 4 out of 5 stars.
"People Like Us" has a fine cast, a fairly stimulating (yet safe) plot,
and some heartfelt life lessons thrown in for good measure. The next
paragraph contains a gentle spoiler about this films' themes.
A man (Pine) receives some bad news about his family. He needs to do the right thing, grow up, and bust through the defenses he has spent years hiding under. As he makes a reunion of sorts with family members, the plot unfolds. Each character deals with their own personal set of challenges.
I'll confess that I had hesitations about the casting. Pine is cute as-a-button, and I tend to be drawn to actors who are a bit rough around the edges. But I was wrong to doubt his abilities. He layered his role with some interesting nuances. His interactions with the Elizabeth Banks character were entertaining and fairly genuine. The young actor Michael Hall D'Addario was absolutely wonderful. Banks and Pfeiffer each turned in very sturdy performances. Wilde was also effective, but she needed more screen time.
Kudos to the director Alex Kurtzman for his reasonably light touch. It seems like he allowed the actors a long leash in developing their characterizations. This is no easy task, because Kurtzman also co-wrote the script.
The musical score had some strong moments, particularly when they highlighted classic rock tunes from decades ago. There were periodic sentimental tunes, which seemed a bit manipulative. And there was a beach scene which was a bit deflated, because it was so typically pretty. I wish this film would have taken more risks, and navigated through an even murkier emotional landscape.
At the end of the day, I would recommend this, and I look forward to seeing more films from Kurtzman. If you're still with me at this point, I beg your pardon. Uh, bartender... I'll have an extra dry martini with 2 olives, please.
I really enjoyed seeing this latest movie with Chris Pine. The acting is great, the storyline is well written with adequate character development to let you get emotionally invested. Michelle Pfeiffer gives the level of performance you typically expect from Diane Keaton with empathy and sincerity. Chris Pine as Sam shows he's much more than just a pretty face, but the true scene stealer is Michael Hall D'Addario who plays Josh, the bad-boy son of Elizabeth Banks' character, Frankie. I really enjoyed that it isn't your typical romantic comedy between a man and woman who end up either together or not. Frankie and Sam being sister and brother as the primary love interests give it a very interesting twist but there's also the mother-son sub-plot as well as Sam and Hannah, played by Olivia Wilde. We clapped when the credits rolled, which is rare for a romantic comedy movie.
Nice to see Elizabeth Banks can recover from disaster unfunny What to
expect, When your expecting. And Chris Pine from the cinematic
blandness that is This Means War.
Sam(Chris Pine) a smooth talking salesman, who's last deal falls flat, then his girlfriend gives him the news that his father had died, this has a mixed reaction for Sam, cause he and his father have never gotten along. Sam goes to funeral, and sees his mother. Then meets with with lawyer, who gives a kit of 15 thousand dollars, but then sees a note that tells him to give it too Frankie(Elizabeth Banks)a recovering alcholic, and a single mother, and a waitress, trying to make ends meat. But discovers she is his half sister. How will this play out in the end?
Chris Pine and Elizabeth Banks are beyond terrific with there performances, so was Olivia Wilde, not just playing the throw away love interest. Michelle Pfeiffer is also great as Pines mother. A well acted drama.
Michelle Pfieffer and Elizabeth Banks both give A+ performances in this movie and they both deserve to be remembered at Oscar time. It is a joy watching these two outstanding thespians at work. It is amazing the intensity and depth they bring to their performances. They bring these tortured characters to life and you feel their pain. When I was getting ready to write this review, my first instinct was to say that there wasn't a really likable character in the film. That instinct was wrong. Its not that the characters aren't likable, its just that they are flawed and in deep emotional pain because one man didn't do his job as a responsible husband and father and the pain he caused lives after his death. This is a very dark film, very depressing, gritty and true to life. No "Brady Bunch" happy endings here folks. Surprisingly, I think it makes it a better movie. The only major beef I have with this film is the character of the boy Josh. He is without a doubt the most appalling child character since Wesley on Mister Belvedere. I kept wanting one of the adults to give him a good smack in his little fresh, dirty mouth. I always hate it in movies when they show smart aleck kids who talk to adults more strongly then real life kids would dare do!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
A studio picture with a premise this contrived shouldn't work, but this
2012 family drama works in ways that are quite unexpected and
emotionally resonant because a palpable level of truthfulness emerges
with the characters even as the plot teeters precariously on
credibility issues. First-time filmmaker Alex Kurtzman, a go-to
screenwriter of ϋber-action fare like "Star Trek" and "Mission:
Impossible III", based his personal movie on events in his own life
when he met his own half- sister for the first time as he turned
thirty. The plot focuses on Sam, a slick, 31-year-old huckster of a
salesman in the bartering business. Just as he gets snagged by a bad
deal that costs him the huge bonus he just secured to pay off
long-standing debts, Sam finds out his father, Jerry Harper, a
legendary Laurel Canyon record producer, has died, which means he needs
to come home to LA for the funeral against his will. Reuniting with his
estranged mother Lillian becomes challenging enough, but Sam also
discovers that his father left him $150,000 in his shaving kit.
The catch is that it comes with instructions to deliver the cash to an 11-year-old named Josh, who happens to be the son of Frankie, a half- sister he didn't know he had. Tempted to keep the cash himself, Sam finds Frankie and follows her to an AA meeting where she shares the sudden news of her father's death and the hurtful anger she feels for not being publicly acknowledged as his daughter. Her pain is what becomes the common bond that she and Sam share and the beginning of a web of lies he tells her in order to build upon his newly discovered family ties. It's this thread of deception that propels Kurtzman's storyline, and the moment you start to feel the movie get phony, he manages to get it back on track through the burgeoning relationship that forms between Sam, Frankie and Josh. Of course, the further Sam delays in telling the truth, the more catastrophic the results. Perceptive performances are critical in pulling off this kind of drama, and Kurtzman coaxes strong work from his cast.
Chris Pine captures Sam's manic energy and evasive nature to a T, and he manages to reveal the vulnerability underneath that shows he never quite gave up on his quest for his father's approval and love. Still etched in my memory as the hot-to-trot bookstore clerk in "The 40-Year-Old Virgin", Elizabeth Banks has matured as an actress and delivers a genuinely empathetic performance as Frankie, a single mother struggling with a hardscrabble life and a smart, troublemaking son. She and Pine manage a nice rapport that skirts the incest minefield that could have occurred in lesser hands. Too long off the screen and still looking like People Magazine's most beautiful woman, Michelle Pfeiffer makes her few scenes count as the newly widowed Lillian, who met Jerry back in the seventies when she was a former hatcheck girl at the Troubadour and dreamed of becoming the next Joni Mitchell. She succinctly shares her anger toward Sam for his indifference toward Jerry while slowly revealing her own secrets and fears. As the precocious Josh, Michael Hall D'Addario is given lines only an 11-year-old in a mainstream movie would speak, but he is such a likable young actor that he manages to come across as authentic.
Olivia Wilde has a thankless role as Sam's put-upon girlfriend Hannah, but she provides more depth than the plot device she represents, while indie mainstay Mark Duplass ("Humpday") seems to be showing up everywhere these days, this time as Frankie's conveniently available downstairs neighbor. There are cameos from familiar character actor Philip Baker Hall ("50/50") as Jerry's attorney friend and Jon Favreau as Sam's belligerent boss. A.R. Rahman ("Slumdog Millionaire") provides the original music, while cinematographer Salvatore Totino really captures the vibrancy of LA life beyond the stereotypical images. Kurtzman sometimes abuses quick cuts to emphasize Sam's restlessness, but when the truth is revealed in the story, it reinforces the message he sincerely conveys in appreciating the value of family and the importance of forgiveness. His clever use of home movies to bring this message home results in the heartbreaking impact that was obviously intended. I definitely recommend this surprising movie.
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