Paul McGuire Grimes, creator of Paul’s Trip to the Movies, got to sit down with one of the most famous actors of all time. Robert De Niro stars in the movie, The War with Grandpa. Plus he has another suggestion for you to stream at home.
THE WAR WITH GRANDPA (in theaters)
Robert De Niro has done just about every kind of movie in his lengthy career. His latest, The War with Grandpa, is a family comedy which falls on the polar end of the spectrum from last year’s heavy hitters The Irishman and Joker. His character, Ed, is at that point where he shouldn’t be living by himself anymore. His daughter Sally (Uma Thurman) basically forces him to move in with her family. Oakes Fegley plays grandson Peter who is forced out of his room and into the attic when Grandpa Ed moves in. Peter is not too happy about this and declares an all-out war with his grandpa in order to get his room back. They label their conflict as “Secret warrior versus senior soldier”
Now it may be easy to dismiss this film and think back to older heavier De Niro movies but there is a need for these types of broad family comedies especially in 2020. It’s a treat to see actors like De Niro, Uma Thurman, and Christopher Walken have so much fun doing a family comedy.
With this war between grandson and grandpa, the movie comes with the Home Alone style pranks as Oakes Fegley booby traps his house hoping to catch De Niro off guard. De Niro also gets in on the pranks with his buddies Cheech Marin and Christopher Walken. Then there’s Rob Riggle as Pete’s dad who ends up being the victim of some of the pranks. All of the antics provide the film with some easy laughs that will certainly leave kids howling, and adults may even find themselves enjoying it too especially at the hands of Rob Riggle and Uma Thurman.
RATING: 3 out of 5 TICKET STUBS.
THE HAUNTING OF BLY MANOR (Netflix)
2018’s The Haunting of Hill House was one of the best Netflix series to date. It’s creator Mike Flanagan and many of its cast members are back for a new story with The Haunting of Bly Manor and it lives up to its predecessor. Like many ghost stories this one starts in front of fire. An aged Carla Cugino tells the guests of a wedding rehearsal about a ghost story set in London in 1987. As we flash back, we pick up with Henry Thomas as wealthy businessman Henry Wingrave who is hiring an au pair for his orphaned niece and nephew following the death of their last au pair. Victoria Pedretti returns as well. This time as Dani, an American nanny who accepts the job looking after the Wingrave children at Bly Manor. She quickly learns that these children, the estate, and the other workers have a history full of complicated ghosts and relationships that have had lasting trauma on everyone involved.
It’s fun to have the thrills and chills and to jump off your couch, but the story and these characters are what matters most. Bly Manor is about a series of love stories full of tragedy, obsession, and moving on. We see how memories are tucked away buried with time and space and how we come to terms with the worst parts of ourselves.
The Haunting of Bly Manor will be your next Netflix obsession this Halloween season. You may even find yourself watching it all over again. I love what Mike Flanagan, his cast and writing and directing teams have done with both Hill House and now Bly Manor.
RATING: 4.5 out of 5 TICKET STUBS.