CHRIS TOOKEY: Hope Springs: Who would watch a drama about a couple with no sex drive
09:02 GMT, 14 September 2012
Hope Springs (12a)
Verdict: Hope dies
The trailer for Hope Springs
promises us a middle-aged sex comedy along the lines of It’s
Complicated, an enjoyable romp that also starred Meryl Streep.
made of the fact that it’s directed by David Frankel, who brought us The
Devil Wears Prada.
But all that’s misleading. Hope
Springs is really an earnest drama about a couple (Tommy Lee Jones and
Streep) who have lost their sex drive — and, it would seem, any ability
to talk about their emotions.
Hope Springs is really an earnest drama about a couple (Tommy Lee Jones and Streep) who have lost their sex drive and, it would seem, any ability to talk about their emotions
This being America, they have to visit
an expensive therapist (Steve Carell). The result is a weirdly
distasteful experience, like having to watch your own parents talk about
The creepiness is worsened by
Carell’s performance, which is so bland and eerily impersonal that,
inadvertently, it comes across as prurient.
The film’s strong points are its noble
intentions and the nuanced performances by Streep and Lee Jones. But
I’m not sure who will actually enjoy this movie.
It’s nowhere near as brave or
psychologically astute as, say, Ingmar Bergman’s Scenes From A Marriage,
but it’s not funny or heart-warming enough to deliver as comedy.