Aging gracefully in The Guilt Trip | Film Review | Indy Week
Pin It

Aging gracefully in The Guilt Trip 

Seth Rogen and Barbra Streisand in "The Guilt Trip"

Photo by Sam Emerson

Seth Rogen and Barbra Streisand in "The Guilt Trip"

Like a 2010s version of a John Hughes movie, The Guilt Trip explores confining family bonds with knowing humor. Andy Brewster (Seth Rogen) is an organic chemistry nerd who spent his own cash to manufacture cartons of his FDA-approved green cleaning solution. Embarking across the country to pitch his product to big box stores, he brings his mother, Joyce (Barbra Streisand), along for the ride, to urge her toward closure on a long-ago romantic episode.

Rogen and Streisand (also the film's executive producers) have great comic chemistry together; her motormouth nattering is a tonic to his understated exasperation. Andy doesn't want to be treated like a kid (even if being with his mother makes him act like one), and Joyce wants to be recognized as a person, not just a mother. Their long drive's comic vignettes emphasize Andy's reluctance to acknowledge that Mother Knows Best.

Dan Fogelman, who wrote last year's smartest comedy, Crazy, Stupid Love, and Anne Fletcher, director of two of the grossest recent rom coms, The Proposal and 27 Dresses, hit the mark on this one. The dialogue is funny, the slapsticky parts are not too ridiculous, and the loving/ annoying relationship rings true. I'm not sure why, when this is obviously about a Jewish mother and her son, it has been wiped clear of most overtly Jewish context and language. Brewster? Daddy must have changed it to evade some university's Jewish admissions quota.

Part of my amusement at the film was how much Joyce reminded me of my own mother, even down to the purse hook, hung on a table's edge to keep a pocketbook off the dirty floor. I shortchanged my 85-year-old mom on our daily phone call because I had to rush off to this screening. I'll make it up to her.

This article appeared in print with the headline "Aging grossly, and gracefully."

Film Details

The Guilt Trip
Rated PG-13 · 95 min. · 2012
Official Site: www.guilttripmovie.com
Director: Anne Fletcher
Writer: Dan Fogelman
Producer: Evan Goldberg, John Goldwyn and Lorne Michaels
Cast: Seth Rogen, Barbra Streisand, Yvonne Strahovski, Adam Scott, Michael Cassidy, Miriam Margolyes, Danny Pudi, Kathy Najimy, Dale Dickey and Brett Cullen

Now Playing

Sorry there are no upcoming showtimes for The Guilt Trip

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Film Review



Twitter Activity

Most Recent Comments

I am indeed very happy for my life; My name is Vargas Cynthia I never thought that I will live …

by Vargas Cynthia on Axis of Cinema (Film Review)

The lobster is arbitrarily asinine, disjointed, and gratuitously violent towards both humans and former humans that "didn't make it." If …

by Marco_Polo on The Lobster Surreally Skewers Society’s Fear of Single People (Film Review)

The only peeople who murdered those boys were let off by an inexperienced prosecutor and hoodwinked judge. The facts are …

by Greg 1 on The West Memphis Three are free ... what about the real killer? (Film Review)

"Miles Ahead"... "opening Friday".... where? I'm having a tough time finding film times/locations on www.indyweek.com now. The …

by Tbone on Don Cheadle’s Miles Davis Film, Miles Ahead, Isn’t a Real Biopic—It’s Something Better (Film Review)

Comments

I am indeed very happy for my life; My name is Vargas Cynthia I never thought that I will live …

by Vargas Cynthia on Axis of Cinema (Film Review)

The lobster is arbitrarily asinine, disjointed, and gratuitously violent towards both humans and former humans that "didn't make it." If …

by Marco_Polo on The Lobster Surreally Skewers Society’s Fear of Single People (Film Review)

Most Read

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

© 2016 Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation