If You're Not in the Obit, Eat Breakfast (2017) Poster

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An unexpected celebration of being alive.
eladale-902116 June 2017
This is the most powerful, uplifting, wonderful documentary I have seen in....well, maybe ever. It touched so many warm places in my soul that I can't even begin to relate them all.

Carl Reiner hosts celebrities who give us deeply personal glimpses into their thoughts at the age of 90 and beyond. Rather than being a showcase of past glory and faded memories by icons you might remember, this film is a celebration of all that has brought these people to this age and taught them how to live well and thrive. You might think that being celebrities with wealth and fame, their kind of happiness would be foreign to common folks like us. But as we visit with each celebrity, the common denominator of their humanity sweeps away the star stuff. They make it very clear we all face the same mortality, suffer the same losses, and find our joy in life through the same simple values. When you have lived to 90 and beyond, you have nothing more to prove. Live well and abide by the simple wisdom of just being yourself, giving, loving, and having purpose in your life.

In a world that seems to be increasingly marked by milestones of tragedy and loss, this documentary serves as a joyous reminder of what is really important in life. It has impacted me deeply, at age 60. And my 90 year old mother in law was just as moved when she saw it. She has asked to watch it again.

If I could, I would personally thank every one who was interviewed for this film for giving so much of themselves. Those who filmed, edited, and created the vessel to convey these messages did an outstanding job. This was beautiful, entertaining, and thought provoking in a way that makes you just want to burst with happiness. It was a truly unexpected gift. Thank you.
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Charming and uplifting
taita11 September 2017
As someone skidding across the stage of life towards old age I found this feature truly heartening and uplifting. While the subjects featured were well heeled and in predominantly good health the reason they were comfortably off is because for their whole lives they have gone out and just done it. They didn't sit back and wait for things to fall in their lap, they have worked hard for their success and that zest and drive is still very much in evidence today. My particular favourite was the 100 year old lady who took up running in her 80's This is a documentary that gives hope and not a little incentive to get up and get going.
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Charming Film, With Tunnel Vision
DrGerbil7 June 2017
This is a heartwarming film about people in their nineties, mostly celebrities, who discuss what keeps them going in life.

I enjoyed seeing all of the participants, especially Dick Van Dyke and Betty White, who I remember from the 1950s, both of whom are still lively past the age of 90.

What I did not like about the film is the implication that we can all be as fortunate as the individuals depicted. Medical problems are not discussed, nor is the fact that most people simply die before they reach eighty years of age. I did not like the fact that the film suggests that we can all stay alive and healthy with a "can-do" spirit. This idea is so simplistic and inaccurate, it's almost offensive.

However, I do recommend the film, due to the fact that the participants are all interesting and inspirational.
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Amazingly Inspirational & Powerful
jnic-0285027 June 2017
Warning: Spoilers
I'm in my mid-forties and found this documentary amazingly inspirational and powerful. First off, I love Carl Reiner, Dick Van Dyke, Betty White, Ida Keeling, etc. BUT, to have had the privilege to listen to the outlooks of truly prolific people in this world who are thriving in their 90's and even 100's has given me pause and makes me think...

How do I set myself up to live an actively vivacious life well into my 90's and beyond? How do I engender a voice that is worth listening to as I continue to age? How do I remain relevant, healthy, funny, and able to have a great time? This culture can look to others who relish those of great age and celebrate them as heroes of the ages who have a wealth of knowledge and perspective to share.

Thank you all for your wisdom, and your guidance on how to live a great long life!
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Getting old sounds like fun if you watch this doc.
thekatman5 June 2017
It was wonderful seeing the great celebrities I grew up with from the 1950's-1960's. The thing is that all these people are rich. They didn't find any washed up or middle class or poor celebrities. They found folks with trainers, dietitians, and all the money in the world to fix anything short of falling off a cliff. Nor did they mention if any of these folks had any serious health issues in their past. DNA and luck plays a huge part in this story. Still, in spite of the huge departure from reality (What am I saying? This is TV!)it was an enjoyable documentary if for no other reason to see all these wonderful artists talk about their versions of why they aren't dead yet. One last thing...while these artists put on a show for the cameras, you could see they were struggling to keep up. Clearly, they are doing well considering their age...but sharp? I don't think so.
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Uplifting Heartwarming Documentary
juliankennedy2321 February 2019
Warning: Spoilers
If You're Not in the Obit, Eat Breakfast: 7 out of 10: Carl Reiner seeks out some fellow ninety-year-olds to see if they have anything in common that may explain both their longevity and their spirit for life.

This documentary is heartwarming at its core. Interviews with sprightly ninety-year-olds living every day to its fullest will warm one's cockles. One particular subject (a 100-year-old sprinter) almost brought me to tears. Those seeking the secrets of eternal youth may come away disappointed as don't get sick seems to be the primary advice (Walking and being social are also promoted).

If the documentary has one flaw it is that Carl, with a few notable exceptions, basically sticks with his fellow showbiz people. One could easily get the impression that the key to longevity is to be a Jewish stand-up comedian. It is notable that when the documentary visits those outside of the showbiz world it is more effective.

The documentary also makes some unusual choices. There is a lot of Jerry Seinfeld in the film. He is overall fine but seems out of place due to the subject matter. There is a weird story about a nude Yul Brenner that comes from out of left field, stays for a while, and goes back to left field never to be mentioned again. And then there is Dick van Dyke.

Dick van Dyke is 93 and energetic and a perfect subject for this film. Dick van Dyke married Arlene Silver who is half his age. (Literally, she is 46 years younger than he is) So far so good. We get interviews with the couple and video of the wedding with Dick van Dyke looking very sharp tearing up the dance floor. Unforatntly the movie seems not to know when to move on. We then are taken to the Capitol Records studio (The one on that famous stacked record building in Los Angeles.) were some very talented musicians do their best to make Dick van Dyke and his new bride sound good as they sing. It is painful and not a good way to end your movie.

In conclusion kudos to the documentary for including one subject who has significant health problems (Kirk Douglas) and boo for not even mentioning Jimmy Carter in a documentary about active nonagenarians. In reality, of course, most people in this age group are not writing books on going on tour. There is a bit of a false front being shown that the documentary gingerly acknowledges. (I would also note none of the subjects had outlived their money. A real fear in that age group.) This is an uplifting heartwarming documentary where everyone is sprightly and healthy and loved and the only sour note comes from Dick van Dyke singing.
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"I could work 9 days a week, and not be tired!"
paul-allaer28 January 2019
"If You're Not In the Obit, Eat Breakfast" (2017 release; 86 min.) is a documentary hosted by Carl Reiner, about the amazing number of people over 90 years old (himself included, of course), who continue to thrive in life and at work. As the movie's opening credits roll, Tony Bennett croons "The Best Is Yet to Come", just beautiful. We then catch up with Carl, who is starting out the day as he does every single day: he reads the obits to make sure he is not in them, ha! But the one day, when Polly Bergen passes away, there he is in a large photo of both Polly and himself ("I guess they couldn't find a single decent picture of just Polly by herself!" muses Carl.) That gives Carl and director Danny Gold the idea to make a documentary about people over 90 to whom age is just a number, starting with Stan Harper. At this point we are 10 min. into the documentary, but to tell you more of the 'plot' would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.

Couple of comments: Danny Gold is a veteran producer-director of documentaries. In his latest, he takes a fond and gentle look at some amazing people over 90 years old, including Mel Brooks, Dick Van Dyke, Norman Lear, etc. They all have their own reasoning for doing what they're doing. Irving Fields puts it like this: "I could work 9 days a week and not be tired!". Take that, lazy "Eight Days a Week" Beatles! But the consensus is more or less: exercise, genes, and good health. It's all brought with a wink and a smile, and you can't help but admire and being a bit jealous (in the nicest possible way).

I recently stumbles on this documentary at HBO On Demand. So glad I took the time to watch this. If you are in the mood for a lighthearted documentary about life over 90, by all means, I encourage you to check this out, and draw your own conclusion.
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So happy I found this!
nikkistevens2 August 2018
This bored millennial was struggling to find something interesting or entertaining to stream tonight and stumbled upon this gem! What a charming, simple, and well done documentary. Great meaningful messages about life and vitality. Hope to live as long, vital, happy, and successful as everyone featured. Very inspiring ! Already recommending to friends and I'm going make my parents to watch it too!
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