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MOVIE REVIEW: 'Last Vegas' is 'Hangover' with heart - and old guys

By: Roger Moore McClatchy Newspapers
October 31, 2013 Updated: October 31, 2013 at 4:11 pm
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photo - K72A3158.CR2
K72A3158.CR2 

Starring Michael Douglas, Morgan Freeman, Robert De Niro, Mary Steenburgen, Kevin Kline; directed by Jon Turteltaub; 1 hour, 40 minutes; rated PG-13 on appeal for sexual content and language, Grade: C+

Paddy is a widower who spends his lonely days in his bathrobe. Sam can barely summon the energy to wisecrack about the aged wrecks who share the pool in his jazzercise for seniors class. Archie has a post-stroke regimen of pills and a son who nags him to take it easy. And Billy wears the decades of too-much California tanning and the stress of keeping up with a fiancee half his age.

Yeah, you'll want to party with these guys. Especially after you learn that they're played by Oscar winners Robert De Niro, Kevin Kline, Morgan Freeman and Michael Douglas, respectively. Especially after you learn that they're about to cut loose at a bachelor party.

They were once the "Flatbush Four," pals who stuck together against bullies, swiped booze and pined for the same girl. Now pushing 70, they're reunited when Malibu Billy (Douglas) finally ties the knot.

Each has a hurdle to clear before making the trek to their bachelor gathering. Sam's wife (Joanna Gleason) gifts him a condom and suggests he (Kline) get busy, just to get his game back. Archie (Freeman) has to dodge his son (Michael Ealy) and sneak out. And Archie and Sam both have to trick Paddy (De Niro), who bears some ancient grudge against Billy.

They do what people do in Vegas ?- play blackjack, do a little dance, fall in love with a lounge singer (Mary Steenburgen), crack jokes. "Last Vegas" isn't "out there" in a "Hangover" sense. It's comical comfort food, with actors doing the sorts of things they've done for decades. But even if this is the safest Vegas romp of them all, this cast never lets us forget that we're in very good hands.

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