Ben Stiller is an older documentary film maker in a rut in his 40s. His latest film has been in work for years, and he makes excuses for finishing it up. His hot wife, Naomi Watts, is just hot.
Adam Driver is a young, hip videographer who styles himself after Affleck. His hot wife is Amanda Seyfried, and she makes ice cream. Unfortunately, I don't find her hot. I wish it was Greta Gerwig.
Charles Grodin is in it, and he plays Watts' father. He is also a successful documentary film maker and represents the Baby Boomers. Ad Rock is in it. He plays a new father friend of Stiller's. He's meant to symbolized the adult Gen Xer. He's got old, too.
Stiller and Driver become friends after a film lecture by Stiller. They are soon going out on couple's dates and block parties together. Stiller is enamored of the young man's inhibitions. He even goes out to a ridiculous new age, peyote ceremony. He is liberated from his stodginess.
Unfortunately, the final third of the film tries goes into old man mode: 'Get a hair cut, ya hippie!' The film creates conflict just to indict Millenials: Driver isn't as genuine or truth striving as Stiller. It is rather shallow, but it does throw out the good cross generational feelings as done in the earlier bonding scenes. Perhaps it just goes to show that when you're old, the young suck.
I've seen two and a half Noah Baumbach movies. Most of them I did not like because they made me uncomfortable. I did like his collaboration with Gerwig in Frances Ha. This film really is his most accessible. As a Gen Xer without kids, I liked it. The slight jabs at Millenials remind me that you can hate the young, but that was you at that age, too. Youth is wasted on the young
4 of 5 stars.