Director: Jason Reitman
Runtime: 119 minutes
Starring: Rosemarie DeWitt, Adam Sandler, Jennifer Garner, Dean Norris, Judy Greer, Emma Thompson, Ansel Elgort, J.K. Simmons, Dennis Haysbert
Description: A group of high school teenagers and their parents attempt to navigate the many ways the Internet has changed their relationships, their communication, their self-image, and their love lives.
Review: Fifteen years after “American Beauty”, little has changed with the relational problems of seeking teens and their disillusioned parents in the suburbs. Only nowadays many of it goes through social media. At least for the characters in “Men, Women & Children”. Director Jason Reitman zooms in on a small group of American men, women and children and how they deal with the temptations of the internet.
Supported by the narration of an ironic Emma Thompson, an above average cast including a very modest Adam Sandler, the movie shows us a disturbing image of the effect of the new media. On sexuality in the modern society: boys grow up with internet porn, girls want to live up to a certain standard and parents that commit adultery. Reitman shows us how today’s teenage life integrates with the smartphone. It’s like real life doesn’t matter anymore, when the real problems happen in real life.
“Men, Women & Children” wants to tell a lot of stories in two hours’ time. For themes like gaming addiction and anorexia there is just not enough time. And because we follow multiple storylines, it’s hard to focus on all of them. Some characters are also in contrast too much. When Judy Greer’s characters publicly ‘sells’ her daughter by posting promiscuous pictures of her daughter online, so she can have a career in Hollywood, Jennifer Garner’s character is obsessed with the incoming and outgoing computer data of her daughter. The acting in the movie is good, it’s especially fun to see Adam Sandler in a more serious role again.
“Men, Women & Children” is not bad, because the concept is good. The movie is just a little to melodramatic, has too many storylines and lacks subtlety.
Rating: 2,5/ 5