‘Going in Style’ | Movie Review

The stars of “Going in Style.”

“Going in Style”

Although I don’t feel 1979 was that long ago, I guess it was.  That was the year “Going in Style” starring Art Carney, George Burns and Lee Strasberg came out; a movie about three elderly bank robbers.  It’s been long enough that they’ve decided to make another one, this time starring Oscar winners Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman and Alan Arkin.  The 2017 remake is updated by writer Ted Melfi and directed by actor Zach Braff, known primarily for the television show “Scrubs.”

This new offering brings along some references to our world today; of disappearing pension funds and companies taking business overseas. The three pals face financial issues and the uncertainty of how they will spend their remaining years. When Caine’s character witnesses a well-choreographed bank robbery at his bank one day, he cooks up a plan to rob that same bank — the bank that once housed the pensions of the three friends. With the help of a shady anti-hero named Jesus, the three friends pull off another well-choreographed heist. I won’t tell you how it ends, but there are few surprises.

I left the movie proclaiming it “cute.” It made me smile a lot, but not laugh. Although underused, the three incredibly talented stars keep the movie rolling along, making the usual old-folks jokes and tired gags seem OK. As I said, there are few belly laughs, but it was entertaining.

Along with the three stars, bit parts by Ann Margaret and zany Christopher Lloyd are included but not to a memorable degree. Still, it was nice to see both of them.

It’s a movie I’d recommend, but only to see the cast of old favorites. The bank robbery itself was exciting and interesting, but there wasn’t much in the movie that kept our attention other than the stars. Even so, they weren’t allowed to show us what they are really capable of. I am almost positive, though, that everyone had fun making the movie.

If you are fans of the stars of this film, see it. Catch it on Netflix or pick it up at Redbox later instead of buying a movie ticket.

“Going in Style” is rated PG-13 for language and drug use references. It runs 96 minutes.

My grade: C+

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Mark Tullis

Mark is a 25-year veteran teacher teaching in Columbia. Originally from Fairfield, Mark is married with four children. He enjoys reading, writing, and spending time with his family, and has been involved in various aspects of professional and community theater for many years and enjoys appearing in local productions. Mark has also written a "slice of life" style column for the Republic-Times since 2007.
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