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September 8, 2018 at 11:57 am #1202626583
I can’t wait to see the film. Roberts has always been underrated as an actress (comedians generally are) but she has truly really proven herself as a major dramatic talent after her heyday as the world’s biggest superstar. Being able to leave the America’s Sweetheart brand behind has done her a lot of favours. August: Osage County, The Normal Heart and Wonder are profoundly layered works of an artist with real depth.
That’s an amazing feat for a female thespian of her age, let alone someone so heavily typecast throughout her career.December 15, 2018 at 10:48 am #1202702091
BEN IS BACK is phenomenal! (:
Yowzers! One of the best films of the year, so suspenseful, superbly acted – particularly Julia Roberts and Lucas Hedges, so well written, directed, produced, and especially kudos to the editor – this is great film editing! They get addiction right in this movie. The audience I went to see it with we were all sitting at the edge of our seats, really caring about this family, these characters. Having been in a relationship with drug & alcohol addict they get addiction so right. I whole-heartedly recommend this movie, it is superb! It SHOULD be in the Oscars conversation but for some mystifying reason it isn’t. This is Julia roberts best performance ever, and Lucas Hedges is even better in this movie than he was in Boy Erased (and Manchester-by-the-Sea).
What is up with film critics these days? They get things so wrong so often! This film should be on top ten lists and should have gotten all of the precursors.
A+ (:December 15, 2018 at 11:04 am #1202702107
Have not seen the film yet but I think it’s also a little Christmas movie. Looking forward for the film. I don’t care about the awards. Everything turns horrible lately so I look forward for some good stuff.December 15, 2018 at 11:27 am #1202702120
I’m excited for this movie but did this review warrant its own thread?December 15, 2018 at 11:27 am #1202702121
I think Julia Roberts can move in and take the 5th spot if the movie is a hit and critics continue to give praise.December 15, 2018 at 2:24 pm #1202702263
I urge people to see for themselves. The audience I saw it with burst in applause as the credits came up, and we were all sitting at the edge of our seats, leaning into the screen. I saw that the reviews are actually very strong but some critics have sticks up their butts and have had some bizarre stupid things to say – Roberts and Hedges have been universally praised for their performances and it surprises me they haven’t been on more end of the year best performances lists. I also loved the girl who played Ivy, the younger sister who is distrustful of Ben (for really good reasons!). Courtney B Vance is terrific as Ben’s stepfather/Julia’s husband, and father of Ben’s step-brother and step-sister (who were wonderful). Every single performer shined – this would have made an excellent SAG nominee for Best Ensemble!January 2, 2019 at 9:45 am #1202716447
Saw this over the Christmas break and was gobsmacked by it. A very good story tightly told. It seems to have fallen beneath the line for awards consideration, but it is probably the 2018 release I’ve been most affected by. For me, Lucas Hedges in unquestionably the best actor under 25 working today. He is so communicative; you can really feel what his character is feeling. His performance here had me in knots, sympathetic and yet disappointed in the character at the same time. The ending nearly killed me. And Julia Roberts does what I would consider her career-best work, so natural and believable that you completely forget she’s JULIA ROBERTS. I would nominate her for Best Actress without a second thought. I would also nominate the screenplay.January 2, 2019 at 9:51 am #1202716456
Saw this back awhile back and I don’t know what happened. Julia should’ve been a shoo-in nomination and had some critics group presence but has been completely shut out.January 2, 2019 at 11:08 am #1202716539
I voted for Julia Roberts for Best Actress in the Gold Derby film nominations, and also am hoping it gets a Best Film Editing nomination. This was a terrific film that I wish more people would see.January 2, 2019 at 2:10 pm #1202716668
This finally opens in my neck of the woods this weekend. I cannot wait to see it.
With all the good will towards Julia Roberts performance, could she pull a Marcia Gay Harden and get an Oscar nomination without being nominated for any precursors?January 6, 2019 at 2:30 pm #1202721170
Finally watched it. What a powerhouse performance from Julia Roberts. Easily the year’s best – the scene in the clothing store was everything.
Why she has missed being nominated for anything save the AARP awards thus far is mind-blowing.
The movie itself is great. Hedges, Vance and Newton were all fantastic too.January 13, 2019 at 10:12 am #1202731681
This was really great and it is a shame that it has flown so under the radar this awards season and with audiences in general. Somewhere between “Ben Is Back” and “Beautiful Boy” is a complete story about drug addiction, and the two different approaches make it hard to compare because they each have a specific focus…or rather, a specific intention. Julia Roberts is spellbinding. My God is she just wonderful here. She should be in contention for Best Actress this year, and the biggest crime is that she has been left behind this awards season. Lucas Hedges is great, though his strongest moments come in his quieter scenes. I think I preferred his “Boy Erased” performance, but let me think on that. His chemistry with Roberts was undeniable and it is all part of the film’s success. Courtney B. Vance and particularly Kathryn Newton are great in their supporting roles, for what it is worth. Newton has proven herself with “Big Little Lies,” “Blockers,” and now this. I see her breaking out in a major way soon. Peter Hedges’ screenplay and direction work very well. The screenplay does a wonderful job of portraying the shifting tone that comes with a topic like this grounded in real life. Overall, I hope this film eventually gains some kind of traction because it is bound to go down as one of the year’s undiscovered gems.
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