If you were only expecting knockout performances from Julia Roberts and Meryl Streep then prepare to be disappointed because they’re not the only ones who shine in this movie. The entire cast is shockingly good. If I had to pick out one actor who really stood out, besides the aforementioned Roberts and Streep, it would be Chris Cooper. He’s an outstanding actor but he usually portrays less than likable characters – at least in the movies that I’ve seen him in. Here in August he gets to play a likable and sympathetic character.
Just a heads up but please don’t see this movie before seeing the previews. You really want to know what you’re getting yourself into. And if you’re thinking it’s going to be one of those family dramas that puts everyone through the ringer but they end up as a stronger, more loving family, for the experience then think again. This movie doesn’t end with hugs and kisses.
On the other hand if you live in an insanely dysfunctional family then maybe seeing this will cheer you up because you’ll leave the theater thinking, “Well, I guess my family life could be worse.”