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With Jim Sabatini


Marjorie Prime

Marjorie Prime
Starring:
 Lois Smith, Jon Hamm, Geena Davis and Tim Robbins


Rated: No rating 
Reviewed by: Jim  
Release date: August 25, 2017 Released by: FilmRise

Michael Almereyda's adaptation of a 2014 play by Jordan Harrison can be more than a bit abstruse for many viewers, but those willing to succumb to its modest futuristic intrigue may find it a rewarding deliberation on loss and memory.

A seaside enclave is the chief setting in his Marjorie Prime where human drama tends to dwarf the science-fiction elements with a rapt premise regarding the mixed reflections during the rise of artificial intelligence from the ups and downs of what fashions human beings into who they are.

Brassy fragility is brought to the fore by greatly admired veteran actress Lois Smith (The Nice Guys, Falling Down) in the eponymous role of an ailing 86-year-old widow who gets her deceased love Walter back. However, he's the form of a computer simulated hologram figure (a prime) - a handsome 40-year-old (done with robotic precision by Jon Hamm of this summer's Baby Driver, as well as diverse endeavors like The Town and Bridesmaids).

Through the mechanized energizing an assist in the recall of Marjorie's life with enough heartache that can be skimmed over conversations dominate an affair (maybe a little stagey for some) where detractors may persist that lives aren't really being lived. Geena Davis and Tim Robbins offer noticeable support as the vulnerable, imperious daughter and technology-intrigued son-in-law with the former more shaded than expected given a sizable absence from the silver screen.

The Marjorie mostly likely isn't a prime candidate for theatrical success, but could be a surprise on ancillary streams. A lower-billed Smith (spryly embracing the writer/director's sensitive approach) may get a justly deserved push in part for her versatile longevity, not to mention this crowning portrait. Even as her character longs for Casablanca over My Best Friend's Wedding in an amusing interlude, something this full-bodied, even bracing may lack a little flesh-and-blood vitality.

  Frank Chris Jim Dave Gerry Matt Claudette Jennifer Audralee Nina  Avg. 
Marjorie Prime        B   D                     C 

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