Apr 012018

The Last Movie Star is a wonderfully surprising drama-comedy that touches on many of the same theme’s as last year’s The Hero, going so far each having a veteran actor accepting a Lifetime Achievement Award, but both of them handles the subject very well, with Reynolds turning in a great performance.



The Last Movie Star

Genre(s): Drama, Comedy
Lionsgate | R – 94 min. – $24.99 | March 27, 2018

Date Published: 04/01/2018 | Author: The Movieman

Directed by: Adam Rifkin
Writer(s): Adam Rifkin (written by)
Cast: Burt Reynolds, Ariel Winter, Chevy Chase, Clark Duke, Ellar Coltrane
Features: Commentary, Featurette, Deleted Scenes
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 1
Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 5.1)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 2.40
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
Disc Size: 39.6 GB
Codecs: MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s): A


THE MOVIE — 4.25/5

The Last Movie Star explores many of the same themes of 2017’s The Hero starring Sam Elliott and in both cases, they showcase some powerful performances from veteran actors, this time Burt Reynolds who gives it his all in what is, more or less, a biopic mirroring many aspects of his own life, and utilizing/integrating archive footage from Reynolds’ heyday.

Vic Edwards (BURT REYNOLDS) is a has-been Hollywood star who once ruled the box office back in the ‘70s but since has had several failed marriages, several one-night stands with beautiful actresses and staring into the abyss of loneliness, spending his days with what I assume is his only friend (CHEVY CHASE) gawking at yoga exercisers or passing by attractive women at the supermarket, whom pay no attention to him anymore.

When Vic receives an invitation to the accept a Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Nashville Film Festival, he initially ignores but upon learning others like Clint Eastwood and Robert De Niro also were rewarded, reluctantly accepts the invite. Flying out to Nashville, in the crowded coach section, he’s in for a rude awakening: he’s picked up by a teenaged goth-like girl named Lil (ARIEL WINTER) in her clunker car; is being housed in a second-rate motel and the awards ceremony is being held at a dive bar, which was being put together by Lil’s brother (CLARK DUKE).

Soon enough Vic gets drunk and wants nothing more than to get home. Before doing so, however, and since Lil had been provided as his chauffeur for the weekend, decides to go back to his hometown Knoxville, revisiting his childhood home, synagogue and the nursing home where his first wife resides. After Vic and Lil get off to a rocky start, they soon bond and begin understanding one another and their catechism divide in generations.

Like The Hero before it, The Last Movie Star is a movie with plenty of humorous moments, but is very much a heartfelt drama and at its core, more so than a movie star mediocre decline, but instead about just growing old. Although I’m still relatively young (more towards the other side of the mountain), it’s a concept that is relatable and add to that, from a movie fan’s perspective, it’s nice seeing someone of Burt Reynolds’s caliber back in a leading role, one specifically written for him by writer/director Adam Rifkin, rather than Reynolds being hired and the script changing for him.

As I said, there are some autobiographic and I’m sure emotionally challenging aspects for Reynolds such as his college days a running back whose collegiate career was over due to numerous injuries, going into stunt work and finally a mega-superstar from the 1970s before falling into relative obscurity, with the occasional minor breakouts like his Academy Award-nominated role in Boogie Nights, and today is paying for his fast rough-and-tumble lifestyle.

If there were a downside, the writing and particularly dialogue wasn’t sharp. There’s one crucial scene when Vic is talking with his first wife, in a hospice suffering from Alzheimer’s, and it’s a certainly a touching scene but mostly for Reynolds’s performance than the clichéd dialogue. And that really goes for the rest of a film that excels with the acting, including the young Ariel Winter playing against type from her Modern Family character, and working well opposite Reynolds.

In the end, The Last Movie Star is a wonderful, poignant drama-comedy that, as with The Hero, really showcases its 70+ year-old star and a movie all generations will enjoy. Reynolds was a delight in the lead and I can only hope he does get a few more opportunities…



This release comes with a matted slip cover, inside is a redemption code for the Digital HD copy.

Audio Commentary – Writer/Director Adam Rifkin. Although it is a solo track, and would’ve been nice to have an additional participant, Rifkin is a great storyteller.

The Best if Yet to Come: Adam Rifkin on The Last Movie Star (17:05; HD) is a featurette where the writer/director expands on the origins of the project, originally titled Dog Years, which he specifically wrote for Burt Reynolds.

Deleted Scenes (12:47; HD) – There are eight scenes that, for one reason another, did not make the cut, and based on what’s here, I’m happy they were removed.

PreviewsThe Disaster Artist, Lady Bird, The Florida Project, The Vanishing of Sidney Hall, The Ballad of Lefty Brown


VIDEO – 4.0/5

The Last Movie Star arrives on the amateur red carpet presented with a 2.40 widescreen aspect ratio and a 1080p high-definition transfer. Detail is pretty sharp throughout and even though the themes of aging isn’t the most cheerful, colors were at least bright during and darker shots did display deep dark levels.

AUDIO – 3.75/5

The included DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track is serviceable enough outputting clear and crisp dialogue levels from the center channel while the front and rear speakers are mostly utilized for the Tennessee style music.


OVERALL – 3.75/5

Overall, The Last Movie Star is a wonderfully surprising drama-comedy that touches on many of the same theme’s as last year’s The Hero, going so far each having a veteran actor accepting a Lifetime Achievement Award, but both of them handles the subject very well, with Reynolds turning in a great performance that seemed to be quite personal. The Blu-ray release offers up good video/audio transfers and a so-so selection of bonus features.





Check out some more 1080p screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.

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