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(Saucy senior comedy)
While it was a bit surrealistic watching four senior citizens having a fling in Vegas and telling too many prostate jokes – only a week after Don’s prostate surgery – “Last Vegas” offered a fun ride through some “you’ll have to laugh or you’ll cry” senior moments.
It’s been called the senior citizen “Hangover,” and there are some comparisons. The big difference is the ages of the characters and where they all are on life’s journey.
The writers choose to go for the saucy sense of humor rather than the gross, giving seniors in the audience a chance to laugh at themselves and the younger folks a chance to laugh at them. The combination of Kevin Kline, Morgan Freeman, Robert De Niro and Michael Douglas makes for perfect chemistry as the actors really seem to be having a good time. Throw in a powerhouse performance by an aging and still gorgeous Mary Steenburgen, and you are in for a funny and sometimes poignant hour and 40 minutes.
The Flatbush Four have all gone their separate ways, coming together after 58 years to celebrate Billy’s (Michael Douglas) marriage to a woman half his age. Paddy (DiNiro) has become a recluse after the death of his beloved wife, who he “stole” from Billy. When Billy didn’t show up for her funeral, built up resentment spilled all over the place.
That’s about as poignant as it gets, as the four guys vie for the attention of a lounge singer in an always-empty bar and sling wisecracks at each other. Sure, some of the senior jokes are clichéd and stereotypical, but you have four seasoned professionals having fun with them at their own expense.
The old friends deal with their unresolved issues, come out of their cocoons and take over Vegas, culminating in one wild bachelor party. The writers wrap things up nicely and each character rides off into the sunset, a bit worn out, but happier for the experience. You will be, too.
Rated PG-13, for sex and profanity, all handled in an innocent, tongue-in-cheek manner.