HollywoodChicago.com RSS   Facebook   HollywoodChicago.com on Twitter   Free Giveaway E-mail   

Film Review: Chris Pine, Elizabeth Banks in Moving ‘People Like Us’

Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly versionE-mail page to friendE-mail page to friendPDF versionPDF version
No votes yet
HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.0/5.0
Rating: 3.0/5.0

CHICAGO – “People Like Us” is an old-fashioned tearjerker with everything that phrase implies. It’s undeniably manipulative and sentimental but it’s also somewhat refreshing to see a drama that isn’t laced with irony, cynicism, or some form of postmodern commentary on the genre. “People Like Us” is a film that wants you to be moved; it wants you to cry; it wants you to feel something. Some audiences will be turned off by the blatant melodrama but the honest approach works for me and the strong performances from the cast clearly enlivened by the material elevates it beyond processed cheese.

Sam (Chris Pine) is a charismatic salesman, a guy who has made a unique success of himself by selling overstock from one company to another. But Sam has made a big mistake, the kind of disaster that could not only cost him his job but force legal action. As he’s done with so many problems in his life, he chooses to ignore it; to run away from his problems. He’s a smooth character with a gorgeous girlfriend (Olivia Wilde). He can talk his way out of anything.

StarRead Brian Tallerico’s full review of “People Like Us” in our reviews section.

Sam’s bubble bursts when his father dies. While Hannah encourages him to go home and deal with the issues surrounding his distant patriarch, Sam pushes back in passive-aggressive ways like leaving his ID in the car at the airport so they miss the flight and the funeral. This kind of childish behavior was what clearly created the rift between him and his pop and mother Lillian (Michelle Pfeiffer) is particularly tired of Sam’s nonsense. It looks like he’ll end up leaving home and probably not seeing his own mother again for years, if ever.

And then he gets a package from his dad (through his attorney played by Philip Baker Hall) and everything changes. The toiletry kit contains $150k and Sam’s dad wants his only son to get it to the sister he never knew existed. Frankie (Elizabeth Banks) is a waitress and a single mother to the troubled Josh (Michael Hall D’Addario), a kid who is getting in increasing degrees of detention at school. Sam works his way into their life, too scared to tell Frankie who he really is until, of course, everything has to come to the surface.

StarContinue reading for Brian Tallerico’s full “People Like Us” review.

“People Like Us” stars Chris Pine, Elizabeth Banks, Michelle Pfeiffer, Olivia Wilde, Mark Duplass, Philip Baker Hall, and Michael Hall D’Addario. It was written and directed by Alex Kurtzman. It is rated PG-13 and opens on June 29, 2012.

People Like Us
People Like Us
Photo credit: Disney Pictures

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent spam submissions.
Image CAPTCHA
Enter the characters shown in the image.

Hot stories on the Web


User Login

Free Giveaway Mailing

TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Happy Christmas

    CHICAGO – “Drinking Buddies” director Joe Swanberg’s latest release of the same star wattage is “Happy Christmas,” an even lower-fi story than the Olivia Wilde beer comedy, steered even more by the casting that it was able to assemble. However, with this movie Swanberg doesn’t so much worry about having a story that could be confused with a more mainstream romantic comedy if it were to have a bigger budget.

  • reno 911 front.png

    CHICAGO – The oughts was the era of the workplace mock-doc comedy, with shows like “The Office” and “Reno 911!” born into a time where TV viewers were excited to see see fake realities about the crumminess of a job. While this series has been available in separate season collections previously, “Reno 911!” is now available in a complete series set, one that boasts a grand amount of special features content in spite of some lacking comedy in the actual show.

Advertisement


HollywoodChicago.com on Twitter

archive

HollywoodChicago.com Top Ten Discussions
referendum
tracker