Last Vegas gambles its legendary cast for embarrassingly uninspired parties. “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas”, so the infamous phrase goes. This feature didn’t quite receive that memo, and released its relentlessly snooze-inducing shenanigans to the world. Do you know what’s worse than old guys staring at young women in skimpy bikinis dancing the night away? Hollywood legends staring at young women in skimpy bikinis dancing the night away. Morgan Freeman. Kevin Kline. Michael Douglas. Robert “I’ll do Bad Grandpa next” De Niro. Partying the weekend away in the oldest bachelor’s party ever. I get it.
The whole “we might look old but we’re still young at heart” principle. Attempting to get into clubs where drunken flirtatious young girls roam the dance floor like packs of gazelles. Becoming judges as they, wait for it, rate women based on their appeal as they strut the runway in swimming attire. Gambling their pension away at a blackjack table. And if you didn’t get it by the end, Fogelman’s script slaps it so harshly across your face before these retirees leave the city, that you’ll instantly start developing wrinkles and your breasts/pectorals will sag. Because being old sucks. Time flutters by without any of us realising. Before you know it, we will quickly reside in our loneliness, combating mild strokes and wanting to commit adultery to spice up one’s intimacy.
The most frustrating aspect within Last Vegas, is that it does have heart. It genuinely has good intentions. I can see it buried within LMFAO’s generic pop music. There is an emotional dramatic prowess that circulates these four characters, making their weekend endeavour far more intoxicating than the alcohol they consume. The prickly friendship between De Niro and Douglas, for example, acts as a backbone for the moral conclusions predictably outlined in the last act. And yes, these characters (as well as the performances) do have sustained presence throughout. But for every dramatic moment bursting with youthful energy, there is an unfunny comedic injection that suppresses all emotive responses. None of the jokes landed. Both Kline and Freeman were restrained by Fogelman’s script, unable to convey any natural humour. And, y’know, old guys watching young girls for nearly two hours is unjustifiably embarrassing.
Whilst Turteltaub’s intentions were well-inclined, and the more poignant moments were executed confidently, Last Vegas seemingly retreads plot points made in ‘The Hangover’ but with an unenthusiastic response. Unfunny, unmemorable and completely geriatric.