A review of the 2018 movie “Book Club”

In most films, the leading roles are given to men, so we should applaud this work in which the four main characters are female and played by talented women who are a joy to observe. Even more than a dominance of men, moviedom is dominated by young actors, even as the population ages, so it is a delight to see four maturerer actresses: Mary Steenburgen (aged 65), Candice Bergen and Diane Keeton (both 72), and Jane Fonda (80). The simple plot is that these longtime friends have a book club, start to read “Forty Shades Of Grey”, and realise that they are still interested in men and in sex.

Of course, this is a rom-com for the grey audience so the humour is not exactly subtle, with much use of innuendo, and the four storylines, while a little different, can only have essentially the same happy conclusion.

But, as a 72 year old man who has done a lot of dating of maturer women in recent years, I can tell you that the health and wealth of these four club members gives them options and opportunities not open to most members of their gender and age categories. Also, as many women would point out, not all older, single men are as goodlooking and rich as the characters played by the likes of Don Johnson and Andy Garcia – and anyway life can be quite satisfactory without a man messing it up. 

So, while the movie is well-intentioned and life-affirming and occasionally funny, it just does not ring true which is perhaps not too surprising given that the writers, Bill Holderman (whose directorial debut this is) and Erin Simms, are both so young. So scriptwriters need to try hard harder (no, that’s not an innuendo; well, maybe it is …). 


XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>