The Tender Bar Amazon Original Movie Review

the tender bar

The Tender Bar Amazon Original Movie Review

george clooney is back behind the camera directing the new amazon movie the tinder bar is it on your watch list and should it be a boy growing up on long island seeks out father figures among the patrons at his uncle’s bar so the story follows a young boy named j.r who goes with his mom to live at her parents home where her brother charlie also happens to live now charlie owns a bar and takes j.r under his wing to instill some wisdom and guidance in the young boy’s life this memoir shows us what life was like for jr

How it shaped him into the writer that he will eventually become ben affleck is tremendous in this he’s effortless in his delivery playing sort of an every man but exactly the man that young j.r needs in his life he’s friend mentor surrogate father and he guides jr through many milestones as he becomes a man now sure he’s a bit antiquated when it comes to today’s standards but for the time he was a role model of support and encouragement i also love how subtly intelligent he is and his bar is full of literature and even the patrons belie they’re rough around the edge’s appearance because they are extremely knowledgeable and wise despite looking like they are two steps away from worthless drunks newcomer daniel ranieri is wonderful also as the young jr now he’s a sponge i mean he’s ever hopeful and an optimist

we can see how his heart will be broken time and again but his resilience is just great to watch and renerya is extremely emotive and even inquisitive with his facial expressions continually drawing me in and making me root for him ty sheridan plays the older jr and he does a good job of continuing that longing and hopefulness that was established by ranieri he brings a quiet strength to the character as well as some frustrating naivete which then drives his optimism now unfortunately it’s during sheridan’s portion of the story where the movie begins to lose some of its luster the first third of the film is funny endearing and engaging the second third retains some of the charm but begins to wane and how engaging it actually is at about 45 minutes in the story began to feel long which i think is a bummer

because it started out so strong and it’s not sheridan’s fault that the story begins to drag some it feels like we’re getting so much forward momentum with the younger jr as he is being taught all kinds of life lessons through experience and by his uncle charlie when the story gets to j.r being in college we’re seeing less forward momentum even though we’re still being shown character growth and i would prefer the pace of the second act of the story to just be a bit quicker and move along faster and while the events jr experiences can be engaging not all of them needed the repeated focus that they got at an hour and 46 minutes i felt the time making it seem much longer than it actually was lily rabe and christopher lloyd co-star in this and while lloyd has a moment or two to shine he’s also put into the background to be some eccentric crazy old guy that just works with varying effectiveness rave is great at creating the strong and determined mom of jr

she’s convincing in a role always just pushing her son to be his best in order to escape the life that she finds herself in there’s a warmth that she brings that’s wonderful to watch but she’s also got some snart to her which is pretty funny and that comes out especially when she’s dealing with her dad the soundtrack in this is amazing the songs not only capture the era of the early 70s and into the mid-80s but they also help to shape the tone of the story as well they’re upbeat at the right times and then dip into melancholy when appropriate now in contrast to the amazing soundtrack some of the cinematography is less than awesome i mean some of it looks great especially as it captures small moments in the faces of our characters

but there are some very odd camera zooms that are executed more prominently in the second half of the film and these felt awkward almost more like an editing mistake more than something on purpose i mean it was like the camera had gotten a shot and then was transitioning to a new shot and the editing was supposed to cut to a different angle while that zoom occurred but there’s no cut we just get these weirdly placed zooms at random times and even though the pace of the film was uneven with the latter portion dragging more than it should and then the odd choice of cinematography and the editing choices i was still invested in the story i was rooting for jr the entire way through even when he had setbacks or seemed like he had lost his way the story continually drew me in keeping me invested in his outcome and as much as i did enjoy the narrative and the performances

I don’t think this is one that i’m going to be re-watching anytime soon i mean the actors are wonderful especially affleck and ranieri but this isn’t one that has me chomping in the bit to watch over and over i mean it is good for a one-time watch especially if you want to see an outstanding performance by ben affleck there’s sex no nudity a ton of profanity and some violence i give the tinder bar three out of five couches so what are you watching this weekend anything i should put on my list to check out let me know in the comments below if you enjoyed this review.

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