The Magic of Belle Isle (2012)

magicofbelleisle_2012_poster
The Magic of Belle Isle (2012)
  • Time: 109 min
  • Genre: Comedy | Drama
  • Director: Rob Reiner
  • Cast: Morgan Freeman, Madeline Carroll, Virginia Madsen

Storyline:

Reuniting with director Rob Reiner from the hit film, The Bucket List, Freeman plays Monte Wildhorn, a famous Western novelist whose struggle with alcoholism has sapped his passion for writing. He takes a lakeside cabin for the summer in picturesque Belle Isle, and befriends the family next door-an attractive single mom (Madsen) and her young daughters-who help him find inspiration again.

One review

  • I had high hopes for this movie and was looking forward to enjoying the premise of a curmudgeonly writer “finding” himself in an idyllic lakeside cottage, through his interactions with the single mom and her kids next door (and even through Spot, the dog). However, my eyes rolled and I yelled “NO” at the screen, when the story chose to go down the romantic path.

    The scenery was beautiful, and I did enjoy Monte’s erudite manner of speaking. The acting was fairly good all around, except for some over-reaching on Finn’s part.

    There were way too many contrived moments for my liking, though: 1) When a 9-year old damages a jump house, there are consequences. Monte should have been arrested for assault, for brandishing his gun. 2) As a single mother myself, I would surely not ask the much older gun-brandishing neighbor, on the spur of the moment, to watch my children, while I attended a scheduled meeting and planned to be away for 14 hours or so. 3) The romance element was downright creepy. Period. We all know that Morgan Freeman is in his 70’s, and Virginia Madsen’s character would have realistically been only in her mid-40’s (as the mother of a 7-year old). This was too much of an age gap to be believable, even by Hollywood standards.

    I gave this film 6 stars based solely on my respect for Morgan Freeman as an actor. Perhaps I am too cynical for this much syrupy sweetness, but in my opinion, a reality check should have been applied.

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