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Sunday, May 26, 2013

Out To Sea (1997)

A geriatric gambler and con man (Walter Matthau) tricks his widowed brother in law (Jack Lemmon) into joining him on a luxury cruise. Once aboard ship, the brother in law discovers that the gambler has signed them on as dance "hosts" in the hopes of capturing a rich old widow. Instead of a third GRUMPY OLD MEN movie, Lemmon and Matthau give us this variation on a theme. Unfortunately, their characters are more obnoxious than amusing and sadly, both are rather, dare I say it, decrepit looking even though they're only in their 70s (they'd both be dead within 5 years). Contrast them with co-stars Donald O'Connor and Elaine Stritch, also in their 70s, but as they demonstrate on the dance floor, full of spark and agility. Directed by Martha Coolidge (RAMBLING ROSE), the film comes across as a big budget screen version of THE LOVE BOAT. There are compensations to be had. Nobody delivers a put down like Stritch, O'Connor gets to tap a bit, Dyan Cannon gets to let loose with that irresistible laugh of hers, Brent Spiner has a nice turn as a smarmy cruise director and it was nice to see Gloria DeHaven (looking great) back in action again. With Hal Linden, Rue McClanahan and Edward Mulhare.

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