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Ellen Sterling sterling

Movies: Last Vegas

Friday, November 1, 2013

Four Oscar winners — Michael Douglas, 69, Robert De Niro, 70, Morgan Freeman, 76, and Kevin Kline, 66 — come to our fair city for a bachelor party in Last Vegas. These guys were known, in earlier days, as the “Flatbush Four,” friends from Brooklyn now scattered across the country who have mostly stayed in touch. Now, Billy (Douglas) is marrying a girl many years younger than he and his friends throw him a bachelor party in Las Vegas.

The Flatbush Four (from left, Morgan Freeman, Michael Douglas, Robert DeNiro and Kevin Kline) descend on Las Vegas to send one of their own into marriage.
Photo: ©2013 CBS Films

Archie (Freeman) and Sam (Kline) hatch the plot and, because Paddy (DeNiro) is angry at Billy, they trick him into going. The fifth Academy Award-winner in the film is Mary Steenburgen (60). She plays Diana, former lawyer who came to Las Vegas to become a lounge singer.

The Las Vegas in this movie is not the same city as you’ve seen in Leaving Las Vegas or The Hangover movies. No, this is one where it is possible for senior citizens to have fun. And the reason they can do so is because Southwest Airlines and MGM Resorts’ Aria make it possible. The product/brand placement is amazing (ly obvious). Binion’s — although referred to as “a dump” by one character — is prominent, too and there’s a bit on the Stratosphere thrill ride.

In fact, one might easily believe Last Vegas is an advertisement for the city. Others have called it AARP’s Animal House and The Hangover for Geezers. They’re not too wrong.

Director Jon Turtletaub hasn’t gotten much of a script from Dan Fogelman in terms of the unexpected, but that’s OK. You want to see these tremendous pros strut their stuff and they do.

It’s almost as fun watching Last Vegas as it must have been to make it. The cast is having a grand time and, if you don’t expect the best comedy ever (and don’t mind jokes as old as the actors), you, too, may have a grand time. After all, these actors are visiting us and it’s fun to welcome them.

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