A marvelous ensemble cast
Timothy D. Naegele | Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles | 10/30/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"What a beautiful film, with a marvelous ensemble cast. Michael Caine (as "Jack") is brilliant and in a class by himself; and his love of acting is evident in each role he plays, always superbly. And the addition of Helen Mirren (as his wife "Amy") brings together two of the world's finest actors, and worldwide treasures. Bob Hoskins is always terrific, as is David Hemmings, and of course Ray Winstone (as Jack and Amy's son, "Vince"). It is so nice to see Tom Courtenay (first acclaimed in "The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner" and "Doctor Zhivago"), as well as the lovely Kelly Reilly (as young Amy).
For those who love British films at their best, in contrast to crass American special-effects movies, this is well worth viewing. The four men set out on a journey to honor Jack's final wishes; and it is moving in ways that are soft and tender, and beautiful. Amy adds that special touch, both in her youth and the winter of her life. Ah, to be a fly on the wall watching these great talents bring their magic to the silver screen--after waiting two and a half years for the money to make the film.
"Last Orders" is also about a father and son, who pretend that they do not need each other, but who need and love one another very much, which is true of most fathers and their daughters too. Also, right at the height of something--as director Fred Schepisi reminds us in the "Special Features" that are included on the disk--something goes wrong. Or as John Lennon reminded us in prophetic words from his last album: "[L]ife is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.""
Interesting story--but multiple cast flashbacks just never w
R. Kyle | USA | 06/02/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The novel was fascinating, but executing it on a big screen obviously was a huge challenge. Both my spouse and I got lost when the film flashed far enough back to change cast members. Much of the quips were wonderful, dry British humor--and if I just kept up with them, it was fine. It also helped to have read the book recently enough to make connections with the characters."