Rated: PG-13 for sexual material, drug use and brief strong language. Reviewed by: Jim Release date: May 15, 2015 Released by: Two Flints
A comedy/drama which will appeal to audiences of The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and even the better Enough Said or Nebraska stars an underrated aging actress who's starred alongside greats like Robert DeNiro, Robert Duvall and Woody Allen (remember the extraordinary ensemble of Husbands and Wives).
In the blandly titled I'll See You In My Dreams, an appealing, full-of-life Blythe Danner (mother of Gwyneth Paltrow most recognizable in the last fifteen years from the Meet The Parents pictures) gets to show what she's capable of - as septuagenarian Carol Peterson quite wistful after the loss of her pet. Under the direction of co-scenarist Brett Haley (in his second feature), Danner is able to shine because of the even-handed approach to the discouragement of growing old especially when it means saying goodbye to those we love most.
The narrative has a youthful ebullience to it that the cast, particularly Danner, embraces in the awkward transition from unhappy, mundane solitude. Carol, in time, begins to reach out to Martin Starr's pool attendant Lloyd, as well as a wealthy, cigar-chomping man closer to her own age Bill (Sam Elliott of Draft Day, Up In The Air, and further back in Mask and Lifeguard). Lloyd will be recognizable to Judd Apatow aficionados and demonstrates some acting chops other than his usual sideline characters and the sweetly gruff Elliott complements the adorable Danner quite well.
Maybe other actors like Malin Akerman of Watchmen, Wanderlust, and Rock of Ages are short shrifted, but alongside Danner the result is an often original offbeat, good-natured revelation. It may sound like it should appear on 'Hallmark' or 'Lifetime' network programming, but I'll See You In My Dreams is a pretty sagacious and sincere variant on coming-of-age, not needling too much in life's vicissitudes or its joys, either.
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