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Monday, May 16, 2016

Monday Movie Mania - The Judge

During my flu from hell, HBO/Cinemax had one of their free weekends. Luckily, they were showing several movies I'd wanted to see in the theater, but for various reasons didn't get a chance to. Some I watched in real time; others we recorded since they were on at the same time as something else we wanted to see.

I'm a huge fan of Robert Downey, Jr., and Robert Duvall, and The Judge was about a lawyer with a dysfunctional relationship with his father, which was right up my alley. Unfortunately, it was released the day we closed on the house in Houston. By the time we finished dealing with renting the new apartment and unloading the moving truck, it was out of the theaters in both Texas and Ohio.


* * * SPOILERS * * *


PROS
1) Duvall's Oscar nomination as Best Supporting Actor was well-deserved. He played off RDJ as the estranged father so well that I think he was cheated.

2) RDJ reminded me he can play so much more than Tony Stark/Iron Man. His performance as middle son Henry reminded me of Chaplin.

3) Vincent D'Onofrio was so damn sweet as oldest brother Glen, a nice reminder than he can play things other than assholes.

4) Henry's encounter with a much younger bar waitress provides a welcome thread of humor in what could be a thoroughly depressing movie otherwise.


CONS
1) I honestly can't think of a single one.


One last thing that is neither a pro or a con: this movie pushed some personal buttons in DH and me. The type of buttons where we questioned whether we wanted to continue watching, and each of us asking the other, "Are you okay?"

Judge Palmer has Stage 4 colon cancer, and he's an alcoholic, though at the beginning of the movie, he's been sober for twenty-eight years. Just a friendly warning if you've suffered through these experiences.

Overall, I give The Judge 9 out of 10 stars.

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