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Robert De Niro Can’t Save ‘The Intern’

Robert De Niro, Anne Hathaway-Intern-1The Intern is the kind of nice,
good-hearted movie you can safely take your mother to see. Normally I have no
problem with films like this, and I’ve enjoyed some of writer-director Nancy
Meyers’ earlier comedies (Something’s
Gotta Give, It’s Complicated
). This one is just too obvious and superficial
for my taste.

Robert De Niro
plays a well-heeled widower and former business executive who’s bored with life
since his wife passed away. That’s why he responds when a hip Internet retailer
in Brooklyn (where else?) sends out flyers seeking “senior interns.” He’s
diligent and reliable, but nearly meets his Waterloo when he’s chosen to work
as personal assistant to the company’s driven, tightly-focused founder (Anne
Hathaway), who doesn’t want to be helped. Needless to say, he soon proves his
worth to her in more ways than one.

Like all of
Meyers’ movies, The Intern is
populated with likable actors and exquisite-looking sets, but in terms of
content it’s strictly routine. Even the well-cast costars can’t do much with
this material, especially when it turns mushy near the end.   

If this serves
as comfort food for a sector of the moviegoing audience, so be it; I can’t help
wishing for something better. This isn’t even up to Meyers’ usual standard.

 

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