Road movies

Vacation (2015)

Like many folks, I can recite many lines from the cheeseball Chevy Chase 80s classic National Lampoon’s Vacation. Like many folks, I don’t remember demanding that Hollywood remake a movie that was perfectly fine the first time around. But this is Hollywood. What’s old is new(ish) again! Teenager Rusty Griswold from the first film is …

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Now, I’m a fan of Melissa McCarthy. She’s a great physical comedian, has a blunt potty mouth that makes me laugh, and has totally cute dimples that are delightfully charming. But I couldn’t help but feel like I’ve seen Tammy before, but rehashed, like leftovers from last week. The film starts out with Tammy (McCarthy) …

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Chef Carl Casper (Jon Favreau) has lost his mojo. No, let’s just say he is on auto-pilot. When he started out his career, he was hailed as the next big thing by foodies, with his flair and originality. But now that he is established, and his restaurant is a success, he feels a bit stuck …

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Judi Dench, consummate pro of an actress that she is, made me cry 8 minutes into Philomena. Her adult daughter (Anna Maxwell Martin) is rushing off to a late shift at work, but sees her mother Philomena staring at an old photograph, clutched in her hand. “Who is it?” her daughter asks gently, of the …

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If there is one enduring image from the slice of Americana that is Nebraska, it is of befuddled, weathered Bruce Dern, sitting blankly with his fuzzy white hair back-lit like a halo. You are not sure if he is mentally all there. Sometimes his mouth kind of gapes open, or he slumps over in his …

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