Projections - Movie Reviews
With Jim Sabatini

Book Club

Book Club
Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen, Mary Steenburgen, Craig T. Nelson, Andy García and Don Johnson

Rated: PG-13  for sex-related material throughout, and for language.
Reviewed by: Frank  
Release date: May 18, 2018 Released by: Paramount Pictures Corporation

Book Club ends a little too perfect for all the characters, but the script between the beginning and the end is a treasure of comedy that can't be ignored. 

The story deals with the importance of friendship between four women who have spent time with each other over forty years and who meet monthly to review the book that is on the list for the latest meeting.  It all appears static until "50 Shades of Gray" becomes the book of the month.  The sensual aspects of the book bring out the strength and weakness in each of their relationships with men.  

Diane Keaton recently lost her husband a solid accountant and she must now deal with her overprotective daughters.  Her chance meeting with a pilot while a passenger on a flight leads to a romance that her kids believe should not be in her future.  She hides the popular book she is reading by telling her new friend that it's Moby Dick which excites her a great deal.  As will be for the other women she finds a changing world surrounding her when her daughters surprise her while she is having a romantic evening floating in a swimming pool with her intimate new friend. 

Jane Fonda is the hard nose successful business woman who owns a hotel that overlooks Hollywood but can not commit to a relationship that last beyond a quick trip to a bedroom.  It takes Don Johnson to at least turn her head and remember their early in life relationship.  

Candice Bergen perhaps has the best comedy to carry out, she is a federal judge who has been divorced for eighteen years from Ed Begley Jr. and is urged by her three friends to take a look at online dating.  Her private activity slips during a meeting of parties she must stand judgment over.  She is most interesting and comical when a careless move puts an online picture of her with a face full of cream.  To her surprise she draws interest from Richard Dreyfuss in the back of her black limo and from Wallace Shawn who is a doctor. 

Mary Steenburgen married to Craig T. Nelson is unsatisfied with the limited physical attention he gives to her and she slips him a sexual potency drug which he must explain to a cop when he is stopped on their way home from an evening at a local pub.  

Each of these women is well off.  They live in expensive addresses in Southern California and the problems each faces is not quite like many women who are alone and don't have the ability to freely participate in a comfortable society.  But because of that they can be frivolous and funny and over the top for the script in Book Club.  It allows their effective performances to appear to be believable but mostly very comical is such a manner to demand more laughs from the audience than most comedies.  It is often stated that comedy is hard, well these three ladies do a fine job keeping the audience laughing through out their reading of the book of the month. 

  Frank Chris Jim Dave Gerry Matt Claudette Jennifer Audralee Nina  Avg. 
Book Club  B+   B-   D+            B+   B         B- 

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