05th Jul2014

Last Vegas – DVD

by timbaros
LV_03450aFirst we had The Hangover parts 1, 2 and 3, for the boys. Then we had Bridesmaids, for the girls. Now we have Last Vegas, for the baby boomers (a/k/a Old Age Pensioners).
Last Vegas brings together Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman and Kevin Kline (all Academy Award Winners), to Las Vegas (58 years after they have all last seen each other). They are there for a Bachelor party to celebrate the upcoming wedding nuptials of Michael Douglas’s character Billy, a very rich Malibu lawyer who never got married, and who is now marrying a woman less than half his age (32). Sam (Kline) is living in Florida with his loving wife, settling too quickly for old age. Archie (Freeman), who’s had a stroke, lives with his overprotective son in New Jersey. Paddy, meanwhile, has recently lost his wife, lives in a Brooklyn apartment and is all alone and very lonely. They were all best friends when they were younger, but their lives have taken them different ways and to different parts of the country. So with his first wedding Billy thinks it would go a good idea to get the gang back together again for a bachelor party to end all bachelor parties, and where else? In Las Vegas! So Billy calls everyone up (this time not to tell them that somebody’s dying, but to tell them that he is finally getting married), and he convinces them to meet in Las Vegas. Archie has to sneak out of the house to avoid his son stopping him, while Sam’s wife gives him permission to fool around while he is in Las Vegas (what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas). Paddy, meanwhile, is just so miserable that he doesn’t want to leave his apartment, but the boys succeed in getting him to go to Vegas.
So the men all arrive, not having seen each other for decades, and any animosities between them, especially between Billy and Paddy (especially after Billy did not attend Paddy’s wife’s funeral), still simmer but take a while to disappear. Of course, the hotel that Billy booked them in is full, so they wander around figuring out what to do. Immediately Archie has a winning streak at blackjack, and with all the money he has won, he feels that him and the boys can get Billy a very good wedding gift as Billy has financially helped each of them in previous years. And as a bonus, the hotel where he won the money gives them one of the hotel’s best suites. It is the Aria Hotel, which really exists, and at times it seems like this movie is one long ad for the hotel as its logo appears in almost every other scene. So at the Aria Hotel the men are set to have a fun and wild weekend. But then they happen to stumble into a cabaret lounge and find a lovely, a bit younger singer Diana (Mary Steenburgen). She takes a shine to Paddy, and spend lots of time with him and the boys during the weekend. This is when the film goes downhill quick.
As their weekend progresses, so does the silliness and embarrassment. The men are asked to judge a bikini contest competition at the hotel pool but the most memorable part of this scene is when a guy in a speedo shakes his package in Robert De Niro’s face. And De Niro get backs at Billy by pushing  him into the pool. Is this good fun or a case of ‘close my eyes two major movie stars are resorting to this’ moment?  The evening culminates in a huge party in their suite, with all the characters they had met during the day attend, including some women they met at the nightclub, another bloke who they beat up the night before but then who answers to their beck and call. Why? It is not fully explained.  And all four men hope to get lucky at the party. And then there are  the ageist jokes – Archie asks the guys “Do you have any drugs?” One of them replies “Does Lipitor count.?” Ba da bing! And then 50 Cent shows up to the party (is he playing the Mike Tyson character from The Hangover film? I would say most likely.)  So in this Bucket List of a movie, I’m not giving too much away by saying that the wedding doesn’t happen, and that all the men have a good time and, when the weekend is over, they can go back to their miserable lives. And luckily for us this movie is over.
Last Vegas is now out on DVD.