Tuesday, November 25, 2008

How about You

Film Review by Kam Williams

Headline: Holiday Comedy Has Aging Brits Sending Santa Their Bucket List

How about You is a charming little picture set at the scenic site of an old folks nestled in a rustic region of Northern Ireland. The point of departure is right before Christmas, when most of the codgers lodging there are being picked up by relatives for the holidays.

Kate (Orla Brady), the dour widow who runs the place, is taking a break to be with her own mum for a couple of weeks, so she leaves her five remaining residents in the hands of her younger sister, Ellie (Hayley Atwell). Freewheeling Ellie is a troublemaking sparkplug who shakes the resigned quintet out of the doldrums, inspiring them to do whatever they darn well please, whether that involve disobeying doctors orders, playing poker, drinking booze, smoking pot, or belting out the classic show tune (“I like New York in June, how about you?”) cribbed in the title.

Ellie challenges the irascible Georgia (Vanessa Redgrave), terminally-ill Alice (Joan O’Hara), grumpy old Donald (Joss Ackland) and repressed spinster sisters, Heather (Brenda Fricker) and Hazel (Imelda Staunton), to live what’s left of their lives to the fullest, even if that behavior costs the establishment its elder care license. While this gang’s sinful pleasures might not be nearly as decadent as the hedonistic indulgences of the bon vivants of The Bucket List, their relatively-modest last wishes nonetheless allow for a more meaningful meditation on what really matters.

I like Dublin in December, how about you?

Very good (3 stars)
Rated R for violence, profanity and graphic images.
Running time: 90 minutes
Studio: Strand Releasing

To see a trailer for How about You, visit: http://www.traileraddict.com/trailer/how-about-you/trailer

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