All Together (2012)
Five aging friends decide to move in together in Stéphane Robelin's crowd-pleasing comedy, starring Jane Fonda (in her first French-language film since Godard's 1972's Tout va bien), Geraldine Chaplin, and Claude Rich. Comfortably retired, they hire a handsome graduate student as a live-in caretaker and rediscover the joys of "communal" living -- but when old secrets and long-simmering jealousies emerge, discord among the group begins to grow. -- (C) Tribeca
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Critic Reviews for All Together
All Together is precisely the sort of picture that many have been missing from Hollywood.
Things proceed amusingly enough, even when the emergence of old deceptions threatens to veer into melodrama.
A French dramady about five friends who discover the advantages and challenges to communal living.
Writer-director Stéphane Robelin pictures a unique approach to getting old for a group of French friends, aided by a can-do and very glamorous transplanted American played by Jane Fonda.
It's too bad the filmmaker felt the need to lighten his unvarnished observations about aging with "cute" stuff.
A dour Gallic comedy about five septuagenarian friends living comfortably in the outskirts of Paris who decide to share a house rather than move into retirement homes.
The film's central performances reflect both its celebration of age and a sense of wistfulness.
The acting is solid, and the maturity of vision mixed with humor should appeal to the same audience that turned The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel into such an unexpected runaway hit.
Well-acted and directed, with melancholy grooved insights that will only be news to the young and narcissistic, Together is a pleasant way to while away an afternoon and see some old pros in great form.
You can't help but get caught up in the shenanigans, and it's mostly thanks to the film's two luminous leading ladies.
The film is somewhat flimsy, tinged with the impulse to make the elderly characters just the right amount of ridiculous for the benefit of younger viewers.
It's too conventional to be another 'Best Exotic Marigold Hotel' but features light touches of Gallic comedy and the right degree of sentiment.
As middling comedies go, the French approach has certain virtues. If good wine and long talks with friends can't prevent the inevitable, at least they make the waiting more tolerable.
This could have been a deep, depressing film but director Stéphane Robelin has kept things light... and it works.
Finding an alternative to the dreaded retirement home is the basic trigger point for this film, much as it was for the fabulously successful Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. But that's where similarities end.
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