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Film review: The Guilt Trip

by Benazir Anwar

Age certification: 12A

Written by: Dan Fogelman          

Directed by: Anne Fletcher

Cast: Barbra Streisand, Seth Rogen

Genre: Comedy

Rating: **

In an attempt to kick start his business in selling a new organic cleaning product, Andy (Seth Rogen) heads off on a cross-country sales trip in order to promote it. However, he’s joined by his wacky, single and incredibly charismatic mother (Barbra Streisand) who he invites out of guilt and in the hope that she will rekindle an old flame, after she shares a story of a lover from the past with him.

The Guilt Trip is nothing new, nor is it any huge deviation from your standard road movie or buddy flick, full of trouble and mayhem. The only difference here is that the film focuses on a mother and son relationship, something not always so predominant in Hollywood, and something which when done well can really be appreciated.

The plot is simple, the overbearing mother and antagonised son constantly bicker and pick at each other, only to finally come to appreciate each other as they spend more time driving across the country together. In one particular scene, the pair bond over Streisand’s decision to challenge herself to eating a 50 ounce steak. Although the thought of witnessing your own mother attempt this could potentially be slightly disturbing, Streisand manages to pull this off with such grace and hilarity, you can’t help but feel touched by the whole scene.

Despite the charming relationship we see unfold, unfortunately, you would not want to get into a car with these two. Rogen’s character lacks any real depth, to be frank, he is childish and irritating. Streisand however, even with her annoying moments, seems to have been put in a role which does not allow for her to show off her acting talents enough, and as a result her performance is similarly, nothing special. But somehow, Rogen and Streisand work well with each other and have a real chemistry, which radiates across the screen. Although the film may be rigid and perhaps too well structured, with no room for the actors to deviate, the relationship between the two is heart-warming and with a release date almost coinciding with Mother’s day, this film will most certainly make you reflect on your relationship with your mother and ensure you have a good laugh along the way.

** Click here to check Odeon Leicester film showing times **

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