Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Toronto: Jane Fonda Rocks an All Star Comedy Cast with Tina Fey, Jason Bateman


Did that title get your attention? Jane Fonda is 76 years old, and she’s never been better. The two time Oscar winner leads an all star cast in Warner Bros comedy “That’s Where I Leave You.” Shawn Levy directs Jonathan Tropper’s adaptation of his own hit novel.

The movie is more formulaic than Tropper’s book, but in the end it works even when you think the film is a little too “Parenthood” or “Brothers and Sisters.” That’s because Fonda is the rock solid comic center of this huge and talented ensemble including Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, the ubiquitous Adam Driver, Corey Stoll (who’s really taken off since playing Hemingway in “Midnight in Paris”), Rose Byrne, Connie Britton, Kathryn Hahn, Abigail Spencer, Debra Monk and Aaron Lazar.

In the novel, the mother –in this clan that must sit shivah for their dad– doesn’t have such a big part. But with Fonda at the helm, Hillary Altman takes the lead. (Did you notice this happened on “Brothers and Sisters” when Sally Field as the mom became the focus?) Her laser like comic timing keeps the action moving. Hillary is wise and salty and very very sharp. She also has a secret that involves Debra Monk, one of the great utility players of Broadway, TV and cinema.

The movie played great, as they say. Warners should be happy. They got two big hits out of Toronto– this and “The Judge” with Robert Downey Jr.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedmanhttps://www.showbiz411.com
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

Read more

In Other News