The Intern – Overview/ Review (with Spoilers)

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Overview

The Intern is a strangely crafted film. It focuses mostly on the difference of generations, that of Robert De Niro’s vs. Anne Hathaway’s, and how many issues remain between them. Yet, at the same time, it shows the beauty of when seasoned and up and coming come together and work on something, learn from each other, and show an appreciation for the initiative, and experience, each other has.

Characters & Story

Widowed and retired Ben (Robert De Niro) has done everything working people said they were going to do once they retire. He traveled the world, spent more time with family, and picked up quite a few hobbies and learned a lot. All of which is nice and all, but nothing compares to having a purpose. So when a company called “About the Fit” has a senior citizen intern program, he puts in for it.

Thus leading to him intern for Jules (Anne Hathaway), the woman who started the company only 18 months ago and now has over 200 employees and is an up and coming e-commerce genius; meet Fiona (Rene Russo), the massage therapist for the company who gets close to Ben; as well as mentor a handful of young men such as Jason (Adam DeVine), Davis (Zach Pearlman), and Lewis (Jason Orley).

But, the heart of the story deals with Jules being pushed to find a CEO for her company. One which seemingly is growing quicker than maybe she can handle, depending who you ask, and with her career all consuming, and her personal life on shaky ground, the idea is considered. That is, until Ben becomes the voice of reason or the one friend she needs, to maybe have her think twice on handing over the reins to what has redefined her life.

Praise

There isn’t probably much to say about Robert De Niro which hasn’t already been said. He is the type of actor who can put on a grand dramatic performance, monologue and strike fear into you, yet at the same time present himself as this likable, charming gentleman who makes you look at your grandfather and weep. But what I really enjoyed about De Niro’s Ben is that while he was a classic man in dress, and old fashioned in a lot of ways, he was forward thinking and represented seniors well. For while he was very much about routine, perhaps a little condescending when it came to some topics and did have some moments when his age showed, he presented the type of character I’m sure many veteran actors would love to see more of, as well as audiences.

Moving on to Hathaway, I’ll admit I’ve never been perhaps a real fan of hers, more so because of her roles than her as a person mind you, but there is something so appealing about the way she portrays Jules. Be it because she plays off of De Niro so well, as she discusses the issues of running her own company, sexism, and how from Ben’s generation to her things have changed so much, and not always for the better, or just that her character, like Ben’s, was allowed to be human.

Human as in, neither ever had all the answers, though Ben was close to having them all, and while some of the twists and turns of the story were predictable, you remained entertained for the two hour running time. Which, as said countless times, is not something a lot of films can do. So with a story which essentially is about Jules being secure with herself, her career, and family, with Ben helping as he can, somehow keeping someone like me engaged [1], you know it has to be good.

Criticism

The biggest issue of the film comes from the jokes dealing with Ben’s age, and how some of the cast, though Becky (Christina Scherer) really sticks out, deal with it. For, granted, some of the age jokes were funny, but when nearly half of Jules’ college educated staff act as if they have no decorum and have the perception that seasoned life veterans have terrible hearing, and can’t do much, it goes from funny to insulting. Though the worse part of it is, is that a lot of the moments of stupidity come out of absolutely nowhere.

Overall: Worth Seeing

While not the type of movie I’d imagine being up for Oscars, The Intern is certainly a film to watch. The main reason being, De Niro presenting himself as a charmer, and a well-versed actor, and Hathaway keeping up with him, and using her characters drama and madness to perfectly match the stability of Ben. Crafting a beautiful tale filled with laughter, love, betrayal, and uncertainty, which keeps you entertained all the while through.

However, what makes this Worth Seeing is that, on top of what is mentioned, it has the most excellent conversations which really do leave you feeling: when is the last time I really had an adult conversation? Not one dealing with gossip, or venting about work, but a conversation dealing with the observations you have in life, including the observations about your own, and the many issues which come from when the world’s expectations meet, and often conflict, with your own.

Things To Note

[1]: Meaning someone who often can barely sit through a movie without checking his phone to calculate will it be over yet.

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