Four time-honored stars can’t really deepen the Shades of Book Club


As the wonderful, honorable stars do their reliably good work in Book Club, I’m still not ever quite all there.

It’s not them, it’s me.

Heck, it’s the premise of this entire comedy presented by director Bill Holderman from his screenplay with Erin Simms.

We’re servied a quartet of women that are quite rightly considered among Hollywood’s best of their generations. Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and Mary Steenburgen play four friends who get together once a month to discuss a book.

Fonda’s character, a hotel owner, brings the cultural pivot point 50 Shades of Grey to the table.

From there, viewers get to see how Keaton’s widower, Bergen’s divorced federal judge and Steenburgen’s grown stale wife handle the entry of, yes, the resulting thoughts of sex that now extrude upon their life cycles. Not the wild stuff famous from Shades, mind you.

Would you want vehicle for these seniors to go, well, there? Besides, it’s rated PG-13. That’s the dilemma.

Yet dealing with the topic of sex and women entering their 60s and 70s and beyond, well, that’s fair game. Perhaps more for an audience of women than men, though. Like the 50 Shades books and movies, unread and unseen by me.

Talk it out.

In this plot, Steenburgen’s husband, played pretty well be Craig T. Nelson, appeared as clued-out as from the process as can be.

I looked over to my dear wife Karen as we watched on the living room widescreen, and she seemed to approve of the way the topic was being handled.

OK, then.

I appreciated the work of the talented actresses as well as the actors I seem to see less of as they get up there, too, including Andy Garcia as a pilot who catches Keaton’s character’s eye and Richard Dreyfuss as a rightly swiped dating site match for Bergen’s.

Central New Yorkers can catch ‘Book Club’ free as part of the Newly Released Movie’ series at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 25, and 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 27, at the Liverpool Public Library.

5 thoughts on “Four time-honored stars can’t really deepen the Shades of Book Club

  1. since i saw this through the same lens as karen, and here are my takeaways. i respect all of the actors involved, though i felt they were underused with the script and the stereotypical characters and storyline. that being said, when dealing the with subject of the sexual lives of people of a certain age, it is always a bit uncomfortable for the audience, especially more so with women in film, as it hasn’t been directly addressed as often as men in film, and the old do’s and don’ts still carry over a bit. it’s a balancing act, and at least we’re heading in that direction –


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