I got to see two movies this past week: The Guilt Trip, starring Seth Rogen and Barbra Streisand and Parental Guidance, starring Billy Crystal and Bette Midler. I loved them both. My husband, who saw both with me, preferred Parental Guidance and said of the film, "That was a great movie. That is the way movies are supposed to be."
While Parental Guidance gets off to a bit of a slow start, it hits its stride in a decent amount of time and quickly melds into a film that is both funny and poignant-- a definite commentary on the "old way" of parenting vs the newer way. When grandparents are confronted with this new way of raising children, they ask some good questions, and make some good points. And I dare you not to tear up at least once. The best part is, THE WHOLE FAMILY CAN SEE IT. There is some potty humor and little boy-type stuff, but I didn't cringe the whole time-- and we had our 12, 10, and 7 year olds with us. If you get some Christmas money and are trying to come up with a good family activity over the long break, I would say go see this film. Load everyone up, buy tickets, splurge on popcorn and cokes and sit back and enjoy. I certainly did.
As for The Guilt Trip, I have to say I enjoyed it. It's pretty tame for a Seth Rogen film and I really bought into the dynamic created between him and Barbra Streisand. My husband felt that Seth Rogen's performance was "restrained" a bit, that he was holding back. But I think he was just trying to act the part of the scientist character he was playing. I think the movie meant more to me as a mom than to my husband, who isn't a mom (obviously). The relationship between the mother and son-- his love and concern for her balanced with the way she totally drives him crazy with her "helpful" suggestions and concern-- was right on target. I think it hit home for me because I have a 20 year old son and I could totally put myself in Barbra's shoes. What would it be like if he was all I had? How would a cross country road trip with him turn out? Add to that the funny scenes and one-liners and I found it to be a very cute film that was an enjoyable way to pass the time. Maybe you can find another mom to go with you, or take your adult son. I found myself wishing I had.
Trailers for both movies are below: