Saturday, 3 October 2015

Film Review: The Intern

The Intern is a comedy/drama film by director Nancy Meyers - starring Anne Hathaway and Robert De Niro, this sweet story of two unlikely friends is the perfect date movie, regardless of whether you're 18 or 80.
Jules Ostin (Anne Hathaway) is a self-made Internet sensation; her new online retail business has grown exponentially since kicking off less than a year ago, and each day she finds herself with more and more on her plate. Life at home with her husband Matt (Anders Holm) is okay, but she never gets to spend time with him and their daughter.

When her company launches a new senior internship program, Jules initially dislikes the idea of babysitting someone older than her; however, when Jules is partnered with Ben (Robert De Niro), a widower whose unquenchable eagerness for life rubs off on those around him,  she soon finds that maybe she can learn a thing or two from the experience, and an unlikely friendship starts to bloom.

Sweet, sugary and sentimental, The Intern is the kind of film that is easy to overlook; it's frothy and light, and the cast are all charismatic, good-looking people that live and work in the most idyllic and fashionable areas of New York. Simply put, it's easy for people to miss the central themes and messages because they're too busy complaining about the fashion magazine decor or the picket-fence setting.

And whilst that is true of The Intern, I found that the film also carried real emotional depth with it. Jules and Ben forge a really genuine friendship, and much of this is due to the warm chemistry the two lead actors share. It's a very funny dynamic that Meyers has cooked up, and a lot of this is down to the clever screenplay.

Hathaway fits her role like a glove; with an aesthetic that oozes smart skirts and Starbucks, Jules doesn't come across as stuck-up or nasty, but driven, ambitious and genuinely warm. From the outside looking in, she's got it all. And it's this concept of 'having it all' that the film tackles throughout, with De Niro's sage advice and their friendship being the catalyst for change in both their lives.

Meanwhile De Niro's character Ben is the personification of class and style. He never not wears a suit and tie, he carries a briefcase to work and has limitless patience with all our Gen-Y crap. He doesn't know what an Instagram is, but critically doesn't need to know. Take note kids, this is what coolness really looks like. Seriously, if I hope that even half as cool as De Niro when I'm 70.

Plus, the film is funny. Like, genuinely funny because of brilliant elements like well-written characters, inventive set-ups and quirky ideas. My favourite part came somewhere around the middle of the film where Jules mistakenly sent her own mother an email that wasn't meant for her eyes, and tasks Ben with breaking into her home to delete it from her laptop.

The Verdict: 7.5/10

The Intern is the cinematic equivalent of a chocolate milkshake - sweet, fluffy and just enough to hit the spot and leave you feeling satisfied. Hathaway and De Niro make for a cute couple of BFF's, whilst Meyers' astute screenplay is relevant to all ages.

The Intern is in cinemas across Australia now.

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