Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Keeping Up With the Steins|
Actors: Jeremy Piven, Garry Marshall, Daryl Sabara, Jami Gertz, Cheryl Hines
Director: Scott Marshall
Genres: Comedy, Drama
All hilarity breaks loose in this heartwarming coming-of-age comedy when three generations collide in a crazy family reunion . . . and then begin to see that they are much more alike than they'd originally thought! Providi... more »
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Member Movie Reviews
Rammy M. (m5rammy) from LEBANON, OH
Reviewed on 12/27/2007...
A fun and funny movie. A few "Very Funny!" bits, but mostly "somewhat funny".
Some of the humor might be "too ethnic" and lost on some people (eg the "nachos" line) but I still recommend it.
The synopsis tells all the rest.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
A Peek at the Land of Bar Mitzvah
Melanie N. Lee | Corona, New York United States | 06/02/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Keeping Up with the Steins": As a Gentile, I'm not privy to things such as Passover celebrations at home or Bar or Bat Mitzvahs. One of the beauties of the movies is giving viewers a peek at worlds and times they may not otherwise see. Keeping Up with the Steins is a funny, touching, sweet movie about a preteen boy, his competitive father, and estranged grandfather.
Benjamin Fiedler (Daryl Sabara) and his parents Adam and Joanne (Jeremy Piven, Jami Gertz), who live in Brentwood, CA, attend an over-the-top Titanic-themed Bar Mitzvah given by Arnie Stein (Larry Miller) for his son. Adam, a Hollywood agent, determined to "blow away the Steins", hires an event planner to plan a blockbuster event held at Dodger Stadium. Benjamin, overwhelmed and confused over what a Bar Mitzvah means anyway, decides to deflate his father's bluster by secretly inviting Adam's father Irwin (Garry Marshall), who left Adam's mother Rose (Doris Roberts) decades ago. Irwin arrives in his RV with his free-spirited girlfriend Sacred Feather (Darryl Hannah), two weeks early according to Benjamin's doctored invitation. Adam complains, "My driveway has become a trailer park!"
This film boasts of a good roster of supporting character actors, including Marshall, Roberts, Miller, and Richard Benjamin as the rabbi. The man portraying the Bar/Bat Mitzvah teacher was as cute as all out. Although this movie surely wasn't intended as a primer for Bar Mitvahs, the film shows scenes of the class, as well as Irwin's attempts to deepen Benjamin's understanding of the ceremony. I wish the film had explored the religious and spiritual questions even further, but this isn't The Chosen.
I don't think this film overindulges in Jewish stereotypes, though that's not for me to say. You do get more than one glimpse of Marshall's bare toukus while he's swimming, and you also get some thoughts about materialism, family responsibility, and spirituality, as Benjamin starts to discover and assert his budding adulthood. I recommend this film as PG-13-level family entertainment."
Easygoing Jewish comedy anybody can relate to.
Rottenberg's rotten book review | nyc | 07/04/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Are there people who actually spend hundreds of thousands on Bar Mitzvahs? In the Brentwood community of "Keeping Up with The Steins", the answer is "ofcourse", and the movie kicks off with with a Bar Mitzvah set on a cruise ship and based on "Titanic" (the event and the movie - "I'm the King of the Torah!!" exults the Bar Mitzvah boy). The Stein's aren't the heroes of this story - rather they are never-present foils of the Fiedlers. Denizens of Brentwood, where everybody seems to work for celebrities and earns more money than anybody knows what to do with, the Fiedlers face their son's approaching Bar Mitzvah with a mixture of anticipation and dread - how are they going to outdo the Steins? Adam, Benji Fiedler's father (Jeremy Piven, playing a patriarchal version of the character he plays on "Entourage") needs little prodding before Dodger Stadium becomes the Bar Mitzvah's chosen venue. Once a partner with Stein and now a bitter competitor, Adam is determined to leave nothing to chance. The "nothing", we later learn, is his own horrid past - his father (Garry Marshall) was a jovial guy too full of life to stick around and actually be a family man. Years after abandoning his family, Adam's father lives out in the desert with his younger and hyper-new-agey wife "Sacred Feather" (Darryl Hannah). Frantic preparations for his Bar Mitzvah inform Benjamin Fiedler's dread -he can't "chant" his Haftorah to save his life (and if you don't know what a Haftorah is, don't worry - the point of the story is that Benjamin knows about as much), he moons over the beautiful Ashley, hopes his father will patch things up with his grandfather, and hopes that maybe he can become a man without the need to outdo the fearsome Stein's.
"Steins" is a small if innocuous gem - a small movie with a lot of familiar faces. It looks like that kind of movie that people make to unwind while making bigger and more trying movies, and the cast looks like they had about as much fun making the movie as I did watching it. There are small but nuanced performances, and the cast gets through the plots small but myriad challenges. The story never congeals - the hated Steins are almost non-entities in a movie that bares their name. But the script won't require much effort to keep up with its in-Jewish jokes (like the difference between "Nachos" & "Nachas"). The basic point of the story (that some of these celebrations are so overdone that those involved lose sight of what they're celebrating) isn't too heavily delivered, and if there aren't any real jokes, the understated performances are guaranteed to keep a smile on your face - like Benji's grandmother, the story gets its point across without having to openly speak its mind. If you need a rest from exploding cars and devilish fashion editors, drop by The Steins."
Cute and fun ;-)
Little Miss Cutey | Melbourne, Australia | 12/03/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Today I watched this on dvd for the first time. I thought I knew what to expect (I thought it would be like a My Big Fat Greek Wedding type movie with all the cultural trimmings), but it was different to that. It's a nice family movie with a fantastic cast (I especially love Jeremy Piven).
The first scene involves a wealthy family celebrating their sons Bar Mitzvah with a Titanic theme and a titanic expenditure to match. Now the Fiedler family feels they have to live up to the same hype. It's a cute story line about family coming together and not always getting along but it obviously works out well in the end as you'd expect.
I really liked this - I think it's a movie that people of all faiths can enjoy. It's got some great moments in it and some good laughs too. Look out at the end for a surprise performance from an amazing famous Jewish male singer staring as himself. I love it and hope you do too."