Ben Kalman is aging: he has heart problems, his marriage is over, he's lost a fortune after being caught cutting corners in his East Coast car business, and he's sleeping with as many women as possible - the younger the better. He's chosen his current girlfriend, Jordan, because her father can help him get a new auto dealership; she's asked him to escort her daughter, Allyson, 18, on a visit to a Boston college campus. He behaves badly, and there are consequences to his love life, his finances, and his relationship with his daughter and grandson. Is there anywhere he can turn? Written by
Michael Douglas and Danny Devito were roommates in New York in the 1960s. See more »
When my father gave me this place years ago, I used to dream about these girls. Every night, dreams, all kinds of dreams about 'em. But then I'd see them coming back after graduation. They'd come to homecomings, ballgames. They'd sit at the same tables, eat the same food. And I'd look at them and I noticed, they don't stay like this. None of 'em. They put on years and pounds and wrinkles. And I got one like that at home. So. And we can talk to each other. I know her and I'll always know her.
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Ben Kalmen (Michael Douglas) is divorced from Nancy (Susan Sarandon). He is loved by daughter Susan (Jenna Fischer) despite his womanizing and the mess from his corrupt car dealership empire. He had come close to prison for fraud. He is trying to rehabilitate his reputation and buy a dealership with the help of his connected girlfriend Jordon Karsch (Mary-Louise Parker). He takes her daughter Allyson (Imogen Poots) for a college interview at his alta-mater and ends up sleeping with her. He befriends awkward college student Daniel Cheston (Jesse Eisenberg) and reconnects with Jimmy Merino (Danny DeVito) who owns the family deli.
The central performance is great. Ben is not sympathetic but Douglas infuses him with humanity. He's a terribly flawed and damaged character. The drawback is the constant turnover of character which doubles back. It would have been more effective staying with the mentorship with Eisenberg or the perverted relationship with the mother and daughter. Doubling back does feel awkwardly manufactured. There is a possibility that he's going back for Allyson but that's not the case. It's just weird although reconnecting with Daniel does give fruit to a good turn.
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