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Grandma

Paul Wietz’s latest film is mélange of comedy, mini road trip and coming-of-age story, and a showcase for Lily Tomlin

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Retired feminist poet and practicing misanthrope Elle (Lily Tomlin) is in a funk after the recent death of her longtime partner. She’s hardly fazed when her teenage granddaughter, Sage (Julia Garner), turns up at her house looking for financial help with an abortion. But grandma’s broke too, so the pair takes off around boho Los Angeles to rustle up the funds before the late-afternoon appointment. Various friends, lovers, frenemies and family members are visited, including Sage’s mom (Marcia Gay Harden). The day-long quest turns out to be good for everybody — reinvigorating Elle, and facilitating the sharing of knowledge and experiences across three generations of strong-willed women.

Paul Wietz’s latest film is mélange of comedy, mini road trip and coming-of-age story (even in its short timespan, the characters gain insight and change for the better). All this was great, but honestly I could have just watch Lily Tomlin drive around L.A. dropping truth bombs on people for eight hours. I hope her well-received performance here reminds other directors what a great and versatile performer she is.


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