Monday Smiles – 11/4/2013

last vegasFrom the first time we saw the trailer for the new CBS Films comedy, Last Vegas, Muri have had it on our must see list.   In case you haven’t heard of it, Last Vegas is the story of four childhood friends now in their late sixties who get together for a bachelor party in Las Vegas for the only friend who has remained single, Billy (Michael Douglas).  Archie (Morgan Freeman) has suffered a mild stroke and is under the care of his over-protective son.  Sam’s (Kevin Klein) married but his marriage has been running a bit cold and Paddy (Robert DeNiro) is living alone, mourning the death of his wife, Sophie.  He and Billy have not spoken for fifteen years because Billy didn’t come to Sophie’s funeral.  First of all, how can you ignore a film in which four Oscar winners are having a good time playing men their own age?  (And, by the way, five Oscars if you count Mary Steenburgen, who is the sixty-something love interest).   Personally, I’d see any film with Morgan Freeman … he’s one of the most likeable actors in the business and with that voice, I’d listen to him read the phone book.   The trailer was funny and filled with the kind of white-hair humor I enjoy these days.

We got to see Last Vegas Saturday night with our friends, Ron and Kerry, who are significantly younger than Muri and I.  Well, Kerry is significantly younger and Ron’s just younger, but that’s another story.  I wondered, given the number of old guy jokes in the trailer, if they’d enjoy it.   Of course, there’s always the possibility that all the best lines are in the trailer and the films a flop.  It wasn’t.  The film began with just enough flashback of the men together as boys to set the tone for their friendship in which Billy and Paddy were both taken with Sophie, who eventually married Paddy.   The characters were well drawn for a light comedy and there was a serious if sentimental story underlying the laughs.  While the audience certainly had a plurality of gray hairs, it ranged, I’d say, from thirty-somethings to seventy-somethings and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.  Ron and Kerry loved it and I haven’t laughed as hard since … well, last Saturday when we saw The Sunshine Boys.

Since we all enjoyed the film so much, I was curious what the critics had to say about Last Vegas, so I consulted Rotten Tomatoes.  I wasn’t all that surprised to see that only 44% of the critics liked it.   I could spend some time curmudgeoning about the critics but today is for smiles.  I’ll just say that critics need to demonstrate their superior tastes makes them cynical toward movies the rest of us enjoy.  So, if you want a real evaluation of a film use the Older Eyes Film Index, or OEFI.  You can determine the OEFI by subtracting the Rotten Tomatoes Critics Rating (RTCR) from the Rotten Tomatoes Audience Rating (RTAR), that is

OEFI = RTAR – RTCR

The higher the Older Eyes Film Index, the better the film.  Since 73% of the audience liked Last Vegas, it gets an excellent Older Eyes Film Index of 19.   Go see it … it’s funny and fun and you’ll walk out laughing, even if you’re not almost seventy.

It’s Monday … I’m smiling.

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2 Comments on “Monday Smiles – 11/4/2013”


  1. What little I’ve seen on tv shows about this movie and now with your review, pretty much cements it in my mind as being one I’d like to see. When I’ll manage to get there to a movie theatre -now that’s the $64,000 question for sure though!


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