REVIEW: A Solitary Man

A Solitary Man
Directed by: Brian Koppelman & David Levien
Written by: Brian Koppelman
Starring: Michael Douglas, Jenna Fischer, Susan Sarandon, and Danny DeVito

You see him in the rear-view mirror, but he’s not looking back.  His eyes look stubbornly ahead at an open highway as his life is under construction.

Those eyes and that face belong to Michael Douglas, who in A Solitary Man plays Ben Kalmen, a disgraced degenerate of a character not unlike those that many other aging actors have done in the past few years.  A once-wealthy Baby Boomer taken from his pedastal of pleasure and placed in a rapidly swirling drain is a popular story when Oscar season rolls around.  Jeff Bridges and Mickey Rourke did it to their own ends, and now Douglas does it to his own.

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REVIEW: Red

Red
Directed by: Robert Schwentke
Written by: Jon Hoeber & Erich Hoeber (screenplay), Warren Ellis & Cully Hammer (graphic novel)
Starring: Bruce Willis, Mary Louise-Parker, John Malkovich, and Helen Mirren

How do you confront aging?  Many don’t, avoiding the fact that they’re retired with hobbies, community service, or a condo in Florida.  The aging agents of Red charge straight ahead with guns blazing.

If this movie were to be described in one way, it would have to be an adolescent revenge fantasy aimed at Baby Boomers.  It’s for every mid-life-crisis-stricken adrenaline junkie who wants to make the whipper-snappers pay for looking at them like they’re unhip.  Of course, since this is a big-budget Hollywood action film with A-list names, there’s something everyone will enjoy, even if none of it is anything new or even good.

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