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At the movies: Hope Springs

August 28, 2012

After thirty one years of marriage, Kay and Arnold are stuck in their routines.  Kay is unhappy with the way things are and decides to do something about it.  She heads to the bookstore and buys a book on marriage by Dr. Feld.  After reading it and doing a little research on the doctor, Kay signs up for a week long therapy session in Maine so they can work on their relationship.  Arnold reluctantly agrees to go and both he and Kay are surprised at the results.

I was rather excited to see Hope Springs, starring Meryl Streep, Tommy Lee Jones, and Steve Carell because I thought the cast sounded great and it’s always nice to see a movie with more mature characters, but it just didn’t resonate with me.  Billed as a comedy, I found the movie to be rather sad even though it had a happy ending.

The bulk of the movie was filled with Kay and Arnold’s counseling sessions as well as their homework and there were only a few funny moments.  The sad part is almost all of them are in the movie’s trailer.   The movie has a great message – don’t take those you love for granted – but it left me with a sad feeling.  The acting was fine, but I thought Carell was miscast.  I’d recommend waiting to rent this one.

43 Comments leave one →
  1. August 28, 2012 4:32 am

    I adore any movie Meryl Streep plays in. Guess what?? I’m back to my old reading self. I won a cozy. I’m starting it today. Can’t wait.:::)) Now have to go “pick” the right blog on WordPress. Talk later.

  2. August 28, 2012 4:44 am

    It’s too cute. I’m still laughing. Lol. She’s me. Don’t tell anybody. Her husband is my husband. laughing still

  3. August 28, 2012 6:23 am

    I was hoping this was good because I loved the trailer. Too bad.

  4. August 28, 2012 6:43 am

    I like Jones and Streep but wondered about Steve Carell. Looks like we’ll rent this. Thanks for the review, Kathy.

  5. August 28, 2012 7:06 am

    I hate it when the trailer is better than the movie!

  6. August 28, 2012 7:12 am

    I tried to get my husband to go and see this one with me, but he didn’t seem excited about the idea, so I plan to watch it “on demand” when it hits tv. I love anything Streep is in and Tommy Lee Jones and Carrell are generally good as well. Sorry u were disappointed, but thanks for the honest review.

  7. August 28, 2012 7:23 am

    My husband and I went to see this–we’ve been so busy we didn’t see any of the previews or read about it much–just knew it was about people who’d been married as long as we had–so we were pleasantly surprised at the funny bits and liked it, overall. We did think they were fairly ordinary, not too intelligent people.

  8. August 28, 2012 9:10 am

    That’s too bad. I kind of wanted this one to be funny.

    Beth ^_^

  9. bookingmama permalink
    August 28, 2012 10:31 am

    Bummer. I was hoping that this one was good!

  10. August 28, 2012 10:33 am

    I’m afraid this one will be sad also! And even without seeing it, I feel like Carell is miscast. But still, I probably will have to see it since the two main stars are two of my favorites!

  11. talesofwhimsy permalink
    August 28, 2012 10:36 am

    Sounds like a good rental. 🙂 Something I could enjoy with my mother in law.

  12. August 28, 2012 11:37 am

    I’m not a big fan of Meryl or Steve, and have not bothered to “lassoo” someone to go see this with. Thanks for your honesty.

  13. sandynawrot permalink
    August 28, 2012 12:11 pm

    Love Meryl, but something was keeping me from seeing this (besides my schedule – ha!). I just don’t want to face the fact that I am an old married fart. So honestly I probably will not see this! I don’t want to hear about these problems, and I don’t want to be sad.

  14. Beth F permalink
    August 28, 2012 12:18 pm

    Drat. We were really looking forward to this. I love Meryl and Tommy … I’ll wait for HBO.

  15. August 28, 2012 12:27 pm

    The trailer reads a little sad to me too. I’ll probably catch this one on cable.

  16. zibilee permalink
    August 28, 2012 1:21 pm

    I thought the trailer looked sad when I saw it earlier this summer, so I didn’t plan on seeing the movie in theaters, but, it might be nice to watch with a girlfriend when it comes out in video.

  17. August 28, 2012 1:58 pm

    Sounds like the perfect movie for me to rent on DVD. I like the actors, but those aren’t the kind of roles I’d go to the theater to see them in.

  18. August 28, 2012 4:00 pm

    I have noticed that lately that many comedies that I watch are not really that happy

  19. August 28, 2012 4:17 pm

    Oh, I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy it…as I did. But that’s how it goes. I guess I just love anything with Meryl.

    You are right that it was sad…and I didn’t like the Steve Carell character that much. For me, it was more about watching these two characters stuck in their ruts and desperately avoiding intimacy.

  20. August 28, 2012 5:13 pm

    I like these actors, especially Meryl Streep. This does have a bittersweet sound to it. I wouldn’t mind watching it one day.

  21. Patty permalink
    August 28, 2012 5:17 pm

    And that is the sadness about trailers…

  22. August 28, 2012 5:46 pm

    I hate it when the preview clips are better than the film itself. What a shame, especially with that cast!

  23. August 28, 2012 6:28 pm

    This looked good when I first heard of it, but I didn’t know that it was out! I’m sorry it didn’t resonate with you. I adore Meryl so I’ll probably see it just for that reason, but not until it comes out on DVD. I so rarely get to see a movie in a theater these days.

  24. August 28, 2012 7:41 pm

    Too bad it didn’t live up to the trailer! I’ll probably wait for Netflix.

  25. August 28, 2012 9:02 pm

    I may see this on Netflix. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  26. August 28, 2012 10:13 pm

    Hi Kathy – I saw it too and was so disappointed as I usually LOVE Meryl. And she did a great job, of course, because she is just an amazing actress BUT you are right. Steve Carrel was completely miscast – and wasted in the part of the therapist. His character wasnt meant to be funny and that’s fine but it had zero challenge for him. Anyone could have played the part. I think the problem with the film as a whole was the story, the writing and the situation as opposed to the acting – all three are fine actors – but I didn’t buy the whole premise of the separate bedrooms and the $4000 a week therapy sessions. It was sad and contrived and just not very good.

  27. August 28, 2012 10:15 pm

    This is one I really wanted to see on the big screen, but since it wasn’t showing at our local theater the decision was taken out of my hands. I am always hesitant to watch Steve Carell movies since they are usually raunchy and filled with stupid humor. But since M. Streep is in it I still want to see it.

  28. Staci@LifeintheThumb permalink
    August 28, 2012 10:24 pm

    I am trusting your word on this one. I had such high hopes that it would be stellar!! I will so wait for it to come out on DVD.

  29. August 28, 2012 11:30 pm

    It was a great “people watching” movie. I agree with you that Steve Carell was miscast…

  30. August 29, 2012 12:50 am

    Hi Kathy,

    If a film had both Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones billed to star, I would be expecting great things from it, however it sounds as though the big star names didn’t match the low budget film in this case. There is nothing worse than a badly written script.

    I won’t be rushing out to watch this one and I doubt whether I shall even bother with the DVD.

    Thanks for an honest and candid review,


  31. August 29, 2012 1:50 am

    I enjoyed it more than you. It won’t be my favorite movie of the year, but I loved Tommy Lee Jones.

  32. August 29, 2012 11:47 am

    Thanks for the review–I’ll definitely wait for this to show up on Netflix or Redbox. I generally love Meryl Streep, but only in a good role.

  33. August 29, 2012 12:06 pm

    I think I will wait and rent it, thanks! for the review.

  34. August 29, 2012 1:37 pm

    Sounds like one I’ll just skip.

  35. August 29, 2012 10:54 pm

    I had high hopes for this one, but I’ll take your advice and watch on DVD.

  36. August 29, 2012 11:10 pm

    Oh, that’s too bad. I was looking forward to some sterling performances from two of my favorite actors. Oh well. Thanks for being my movie tester. I owe you one.

  37. August 31, 2012 6:22 am

    I am a tommy Lee Jones fan..but this sounds like a ‘wait for DVD’.

  38. August 31, 2012 8:55 pm

    Sounds like a little bait and switch. You expect a comedy and get more of a drama. Still, I think I’ll check it out on DVD at some point.

  39. September 6, 2012 11:08 pm

    I didn’t mind Carell as the therapist but it seemed like the movie wasted him. Any actor could have done that role just as well.

  40. swright9 permalink
    September 9, 2012 10:19 pm

    thanks, I think I’ll wait for it on the tube

  41. litandlife permalink
    September 15, 2012 10:07 pm

    My sister, our husbands, and I went to this a couple of weeks ago and we all actually liked this one and laughed a lot. There were sad parts but I felt like so much of it resonated with us. Mercifully we aren’t as grown apart as Kay and Arnold are!

  42. September 18, 2012 12:05 pm

    Kathy, I am sorry you did not enjoy it as much as I did. A group of us girls which are middle age go to the movies each week. We happen to love it. I loved TLJ, and Meryl Streep. I didn’t think, it was a good fit with Steve Carrell. But every one has different tastes. Yes, it was sad I found myself it tears at times. But, I still enjoyed it. Thanks for sharing.

  43. September 23, 2012 2:24 pm

    I agree about Steve Carrell – I kept waiting for him to be funny and he never was. This movie mostly made me depressed about what my marriage might be like in 20 years! LOL

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