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THE TENDER BAR (2021, USA) movie review, plot

George Clooney has been directing almost more than he has been acting lately, and this time he grabbed a memoir from Pullitzer Prize-winning American writer and journalist JR Moehringer. And it’s a typical coming-of-age drama like we’ve actually had a chance to see many times before, but I’m obviously kind of weak on such stories of growing up, especially when their plot is set in the 1970s and 1980s. The story begins here in the early 70’s on Long Island where then-nine-year-old kid JR Maguiere will move in with his mother Dorothy (Lily Rabe). The mother will actually return to her father’s only son there (Christopher Lloyd) a home where the house is still full, and in Uncle Charlie (Ben Affleck), a curious and bright kid will find a father figure.

THE TENDER BAR movie review, plot

The relationship with the father who left him and his mother, a mysterious guy whom JR knows primarily as a voice from the radio since his father is a radio DJ, is the focus of this emotional drama. While cool Uncle Charlie who runs a local bar for JR will be a kind of surrogate father who will also encourage him to follow his dreams and try to become a writer, JR seems to have a constant void until he confronts his father and tries to reach answers who he really is. But it will be a long time before that. JR (Daniel Ranieri as a child and Tye Sheridan as a young man) will grow up in the meantime, invading Yale where he will fatally fall in love with a girl who will wrap him around his little finger and play with him. To the horror of his mother, who hoped to become a lawyer, he really decided to pursue a career as a professional writer.

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Since the film is based on Moehringer’s memoirs, it is obvious that the man did not fail the profession, and the film is with inspired acting performances (Affleck was nominated for a supporting role for the Golden Globe, and his character is a well-read uncle full of so-called street wisdom). character throughout the film) and with a somewhat sentimental flair. It is a classic warm, bitter-sweet story about growing up and searching for answers to the questions that boys and young men always have, and it complemented Clooney with “The Tender Bar” and an interesting soundtrack composed of numerous almost forgotten songs from the period when the film takes place. . While it’s not a film to be remembered for long, it was this fine coming-of-age and above my humble expectations. Rating 7.5 / 10. 

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