Nico’s Movie Review: ‘Just Getting Started’ Is Embarrassing
I wanted to like Just Getting Started, I really did. I have to admit, this wasn't the movie I was planning on seeing and reviewing; I had wanted to see the highly anticipated drama by director Guillermo del Toro, The Shape of Water, which opened this weekend, but amazingly, no theaters in southern Michigan are showing it!
So, a little disappointed, I still went into the theater to see this movie with an open mind. I like Morgan Freeman, I like Tommy Lee Jones, I like Christmas movies, so surely this would be okay, right?
Just Getting Started starts off by introducing us to Duke Diver (Morgan Freeman), a man in witness protection who is resident manager of a retirement community out west. He's loved by the residents, and having the time of his life. That is, until the newest resident, Leo (Tommy Lee Jones), begins to steal Duke's thunder.
Alongside this main "plot", there's also a plot surrounding someone from Duke's past trying to kill him, and a woman from corporate (who owns the retirement community) coming in to micromanage Duke's way of doing things.
This is my first of many problems with this movie; it's too jumbled with its plot lines. Any one of those plot lines could have stood on their own, and made this a more interesting and cohesive film.
The main and fatal flaw with Just Getting Started, however, is the comedy, or lack thereof. Honestly, I'd say 80-90% of the attempts at humor in this movie consist solely of sexual innuendos, which don't come off as funny, just as eye rolling at best and creepy or even sexist at worst. I guess the joke is supposed to be "haha, elderly people have sex"?
Along with the sex talk comes the fact that NO ONE in this film is a likable character. Morgan Freeman plays an insensitive, immature man who has no greater concern than bedding lots of women and playing a ton of golf with his cronies. Tommy Lee Jones is a little better, but he's boring and basically plays the same character he's played for years now.
The worst offender though, is the lady from corporate, Suzie (Rene Russo). I get that she's supposed to be annoying at first, since she's opposed to our "protagonist", but she never gets any better! This character could not be any more of a stereotype for the uptight, neurotic businesswoman who just acts that way because she needs a man.
It doesn't feel like Freeman and Jones are even trying to be funny in this movie. It feels like they just do things that are supposed to be funny because they take place where a joke should be. For example, in one scene, the two are on a stakeout, and are supposed to watch for a man they are tracking in shifts. However... they both fall asleep! Now isn't that a thigh slapper!
This movie is embarrassing, because I know that these actors can do better. Hell, they can both even be funny (Morgan Freeman in Bruce Almighty and The Lego Movie, TLJ in the Men In Black series). So it's sad to see them in a film like this.
If I were you, I'd avoid Just Getting Started at all costs. But, if you enjoy sexual innuendo, I suppose it might be worth seeing at a half-price matinee. See the trailer below.