Charles Grodin

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While We're Young Review


Good

Writer-director Noah Baumbach once again taps into a specific point in life with astute observational skill, even if the plot feels oddly forced. The vividly defined characters continually surprise with their awkward honesty, although this comedy-drama suffers from the contrived plotting of Greenberg (2010) rather than the free-spirited joy of Frances Ha (2012). Still, people on the cusp of middle age will find it hilariously, and worryingly, resonant.

In their early 40s, Josh and Cornelia (Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts) feel like everyone is judging them for not having children. And Josh has the additional pressure that his filmmaking career has stalled: he has nothing to show for eight years spent on his latest documentary. Then they meet 25-year-old aspiring filmmaker Jamie (Adam Driver) and his wife Darby (Amanda Seyfried), who inspire them to recapture their youthful interests in art and culture. Even their sex life begins to perk up. And Jamie encourages Josh to make progress on his movie, just as Jamie gets his own project underway, consulting with Cornelia's well-established filmmaker dad (Charles Grodin). But is this trans-generational friendship appropriate?

The fact that they even wonder that gives away Baumbach's own perspective, especially as he fills the film with witty contrasts that work a little too hard to make the point. For example, Josh collects CDs and DVDs while Jamie collects LPs and VHS tapes. Continual touches like this add lots of clever observational humour, although they also make everything feel a bit cartoonish and over-constructed. Plus of course the nagging sense that there's a right and wrong way these kinds of things should play out. Thankfully the dialogue is fiendishly smart, delivered to perfection by the gifted cast. And it helps that each of the actors are willing to be fairly unlikeable in his or her role, although Stiller is sometimes sent over the top with Josh's inexplicably harsh reactions to everyone around him.

Continue reading: While We're Young Review

While We're Young Trailer


Josh (Ben Stiller) and Cornelia (Naomi Watts) are a middle-aged married couple struggling to keep up with their quickly ageing bodies and still feeling like they're in their twenties. They're tired of pretending to be grown up and the thought of having children becomes an evermore difficult decision. Filmmaker Josh soon meets a 25-year-old couple named Darby (Amanda Seyfried) and Jamie (Adam Driver); a couple that still have their whole lives ahead of them and bathe Josh and Cornelia in a comforting wave of nostalgia. Cornelia has reservations about spending their time with people so much younger than them, but it soon becomes clear that their presence has given Josh a new lease of life and made them realise that they don't have act the age they're expected to act, and they are free to let go to; that is, at least, until Josh is diagnosed with arthritis.

Continue: While We're Young Trailer

The Humbling Trailer


"All the world's a stage, and the men and women merely players". Or so thinks Simon Axler (Al Pacino), a washed up aged actor who struggles to distinguish real life from the stage. With no money and all but no dignity left, his agent is desperate to help him get a new job advertising. Then he meets Pegeen (Greta Gerwig), the daughter of a close friend. As his flirtation is returned, Simon is more than confused to discover that Pegeen is a lesbian. Through a web of hilarious deception, Simon is warned to stay away, yet his odd relationship with Pegeen blossoms into something both self-destructive and moving. 

Continue: The Humbling Trailer

Charles Grodin - Vineyard Theatre's 30th Anniversary Gala held at the Edison Ballroom - Arrivals - New York City, NY, United States - Monday 18th March 2013

Charles Grodin
Charles Grodin and Douglas Aibel
Charles Grodin

Charles Grodin - Friday 7th January 2011 at Good Morning America New York City, USA

Charles Grodin

Charles Grodin Tuesday 20th October 2009 attends the Children’s Cancer & Blood Foundation Breakthrough Ball, New York City, USA

Charles Grodin

Charles Grodin and Neil Simon Monday 21st April 2008 O'Neill Theater Center's Monte Cristo Award cocktail reception honoring Neil Simon at the Rainbow Room's Radio City Suite New York City, USA

Charles Grodin and Neil Simon

The Heartbreak Kid (1972) Review


Very Good
Long before Meet the Parents, there was The Heartbreak Kid. Genuinely funny, Kid features Charles Grodin as a hapless and sappy ex-G.I. who decides to dump his new wife -- on his honeymoon in Florida -- after falling for a young blonde played with perfect coyness by Shepherd. Genuinely funny thanks to Grodin's prodigious comic talents, though Eddie Albert nearly steals the show as Shephard's heard-it-all father. Now about that ending (or lack of one)...

Charles Grodin - Tuesday 8th May 2007 at Links For Life Gala New York City, USA

Charles Grodin

The Ex Review


Weak
Jesse Peretz's stitched-together comedy The Ex casts funny actors and provides funny scenarios but rarely matches talent to task. The movie, penned by David Guion and Michael Handelman, trades a traceable story arc for a series of maniacal sketches that can be crudely amusing -- as when a non-paralyzed man tried to impress his handicapped co-worker by joining him in a wheelchair basketball game -- but lend nothing to the movie as a whole. Thankfully, the film's bouncy pace means missed jokes spring to safety instead of stopping the momentum with a thud.

New parents Tom (Zach Braff) and Sophia (Amanda Peet) are proverbially chewed up by New York City and spit out to Ohio where perennial job hopper Tom takes a position at his father-in-law's ad agency. While Sophia copes with being a stay-at-home mom, Tom finds friendly -- then fierce -- office competition with Chip (Jason Bateman), an account executive and former flame of Sophia's who earns sympathy from the world because he is confined to a wheelchair.

Continue reading: The Ex Review

It Runs In The Family (1994) Review


Weak
This lackluster sequel to A Christmas Story features none of the same cast (Kieran Culkin plays Ralphie) and little of the same charm. This one focuses on summer hijinks a few months later -- dad (now Charles Grodin) is still angry, there's about 30 hillbillies living next door, the guys go fishing, and some kind of charlatan is working in the local movie hall. Not funny, really, and Grodin is downright scary.

Continue reading: It Runs In The Family (1994) Review

The Lonely Guy Review


Excellent
Before Arthur Hiller lost his mind and his talent, he produced this oddball Steve Martin flick, wherein an oblivious cuckold of a boyfriend is dumped by his girlfriend and quickly becomes a "lonely guy," '80s parlance for a loser bachelor. With pal Charles Grodin (wonderful here), he explores the bar scene, pick-up artistry, and the world of the house plant before writing a bestseller about his experiences and making it big. Funny stuff, though Martin's soliloquies to the camera get a little tiresome.

Real Life Review


Good
Albert Brooks' directorial debut is at once a glimpse of the odd, uneven work the filmmaker/actor would later produce and a sendup of reality TV, a genre which in 1979 barely even existed. The film is a mockumentary of the making of a mockumentary (whoa, meta), with Brooks deciding to emulate the success of An American Family, the first "reality" program, which tracked, well, an American family over their daily lives. But Brooks messes with the genre from the start, spouting pseudoscience about how the filmmakers found their test subjects (led by a spot-on Charles Grodin), then later fights with the studio who wants to see Paul Newman or James Caan play a housekeeper in the film-within-a-film. Some of these moments work, some are just Brooks hamming it up to the point of self-mockery. If only he'd waited another 25 years to make this movie, he might have had more to work with.

The Great Muppet Caper Review


Very Good
"Great?" I'm not sure about that, but this minor kiddie classic is reasonably entertaining, if only for the chance to see Charles Grodin falling in love for a stuffed pig.

The film opens with amazing promise: Immediately dazzling us with a plethora of Hollywood in-jokes (the poking of fun begins with Kermit and Fozzie mocking the opening credits). A musical number ensures us of the myriad thrills and chills that will soon arrive.

Continue reading: The Great Muppet Caper Review

The Great Muppet Caper Review


Very Good
"Great?" I'm not sure about that, but this minor kiddie classic is reasonably entertaining, if only for the chance to see Charles Grodin falling in love for a stuffed pig.

The film opens with amazing promise: Immediately dazzling us with a plethora of Hollywood in-jokes (the poking of fun begins with Kermit and Fozzie mocking the opening credits). A musical number ensures us of the myriad thrills and chills that will soon arrive.

Continue reading: The Great Muppet Caper Review

Charles Grodin

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Charles Grodin Movies

While We're Young Movie Review

While We're Young Movie Review

Writer-director Noah Baumbach once again taps into a specific point in life with astute observational...

While We're Young Trailer

While We're Young Trailer

Josh (Ben Stiller) and Cornelia (Naomi Watts) are a middle-aged married couple struggling to keep...

The Humbling Trailer

The Humbling Trailer

"All the world's a stage, and the men and women merely players". Or so thinks...

The Ex Movie Review

The Ex Movie Review

Jesse Peretz's stitched-together comedy The Ex casts funny actors and provides funny scenarios but rarely...

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