A Princeton admissions officer who is up for a major promotion takes a professional risk after she meets a college-bound alternative school kid who just might be the son she gave up years ago in a secret adoption.
Lily Tomlin stars as Elle who has just gotten through breaking up with her girlfriend when Elle's granddaughter Sage unexpectedly shows up needing six hundred dollars before sundown. Temporarily broke, Grandma Elle and Sage spend the day trying to get their hands on the cash as their unannounced visits to old friends and flames end up rattling skeletons and digging up secrets.
Paul Weitz's crisp writing with Lily Tomlin's impeccable timing make for a beautiful combination....
Read more @ The Awards Circuit (http://www.awardscircuit.com)
2015 TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL: Paul Weitz gave the world "About a Boy" over a decade ago, masterfully telling a story through it character's relationships and actions. The well-received film garnered major acclaim from critics and got Weitz his first Academy Award nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay. Since then, Weitz has never returned to that type of reception with admirable yet very visual missteps along the way like "In Good Company." In his newest venture "Grandma," the writer/director puts forth his finest work of his career. He doesn't get all the kudos though. Star Lily Tomlin, a veteran comedic actress that has been sadly overlooked too many times in her career, delivers one of the performances of her career. Possibly THE best.
"Grandma" tells the story of Elle Reid, a misanthropic lesbian who has her world turned upside down when her 18-year-old granddaughter comes to her help. With a day's journey in front of them, and with a goal in mind, the two women share their feelings with one another while confronting their past, and looking forward to their future.
Hands down, front to back, this film excels and soars on the work of Academy Award nominated actress Lily Tomlin. I can't recall a time when Tomlin has been more vulnerable, available, and prodigious as she demonstrates in Weitz's picture. Through all the vulgarity and rough edges, Tomlin finds Elle's humanity. You'd have to go back to something like Jack Nicholson in "As Good as it Gets" to find someone in a comedy who is so complex in nature yet so gratifying and beautiful in essence. Elle's baggage may be pushed down as deep as it can go, but Tomlin allows the audience to see what's underneath at the most suitable times. She'll break your heart and bring you to tears. Make no mistake, Lily Tomlin delivers an Oscar-worthy performance. Tomlin isn't the only one firing on all cylinders. As Sage, Elle's granddaughter, Julia Garner holds her own against the veteran actress. In another enriched turn, Oscar-winner Marcia Gay Harden delivers her best work since "Mystic River." A brief but sensational work that stands out. Judy Greer, as always, is terrific in her minimal amount of screen time. Someone please give the woman more roles to work with. Magnificently emotional and present is veteran actor Sam Elliott, who hits one out of the park as Karl. Here's an actor whose been virtually everywhere for the past five decades with stand out turns in "Gettysburg," "Wyatt Earp," "Up in the Air," and more. With a career that's been as impressive as his, with a turn as memorable as he delivers, Elliott should be among the conversation for Best Supporting Actor at the Oscars. He caps off an impeccable ensemble.
If there's one film at the Tribeca Film Festival that can become a conversation starter for awards at the end of the year, "Grandma" has that power. An enlightening and moving film that garners big laughs and big tears; Paul Weitz has created the crowning work of his career.
April showers bring May flowers, and "Grandma" is that beautiful flower for the season. One of the best films that 2015 is sure to offer.
38 of 62 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this