Hope Springs

Plot: After thirty years of marriage, a middle-aged couple attends an intense, week-long counseling session to work on their relationship.

Hope Springs is a gentle film for gentle people; gently laugh at the gentle drama leading to Meryl being gently penetrated. The DVD cover boasts a five star rating, and that the film is both ‘Hilarious!’ and ‘Wonderfully feel good’. A closer look reveals that these ratings are from Woman’s Own, Marie Claire and Top Santé respectively; in other words, this is a film EXCLUSIVELY for middle aged women. If that point hadn’t been hammered home enough already, my copy was also emblazoned with a glaring yellow ‘The Perfect Gift for Mum’ sticker on the front. If you have an ounce of respect for your mother, consider buying her one of Meryl’s good films instead (apart from Sophie’s Choice, because that would be a little weird).

When you eat ranch chips… your breath smells

– Kay

 

When I take such a passionate dislike to a film, it is always interesting to see if I am alone in my view. My preferred font of knowledge to dip into for questions like this (and with most things) is the comments section on YouTube.

“I saw the movie last night with my wife. I noticed everyone in the theater must have been over 60. I said look at all the old people. My beloved said “you’re old”! Anyway, a very funny movie.”

What a gently enjoyable story.

“Meryl is flawless as always, and after The Iron Lady it’s great to see her just be in a fun film because she deserves a break from being three-time Oscar-winner Meryl Streep.”

Everyone deserves a break from making good films.

“STEVE CARELL ISN’T FUNNY IN THIS MOVIE!!!”

I have no arguments here.

“NO,GUNS,HIP HOP,EXPLOSIONS OR HIPSTER VAMPIRES. Yet still looks like a very entertaining film. Who knew?”

Some hipster vampires would have really perked things up to be honest.

80s superbabe Elisabeth Shue appears as a spunky barmaid in one scene. I expected her character to be Meryl’s new gal pal, but as soon as she appeared she was off again, hopefully to begin work on Cocktail 2. Opposite Meryl you have Tommy Lee Jones playing a grumpy old man, which must have been quite the stretch for him. And lastly, Steve ‘I can be serious too’ Carrell plays a pretty anonymous therapist role which doesn’t add much apart from pushing the story forward. This is a low point on everyone’s CV.

After not having the best of times with Mamma Mia, I decided to rip the plaster off in one go and watch this one not long after. There were few redeeming features to this film. I will admit that I audibly laughed during one scene, when instead of practicing oral sex on a banana as recommended by her raunchy book of sex tips, she absent-mindedly starts eating it. That was it. A brief glimmer of humour in an otherwise thoroughly mediocre film. While I labelled Mamma Mia the worst film of this year-long journey, Hope Springs has snatched that crown mere days after. A true achievement.

1/5

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