Thelma (2024)

Thelma (2024)

2024 PG-13 98 Minutes

Action | Comedy | Adventure

Deceived by a phone scammer pretending to be her grandson, a 90-year-old woman sets out on a quest to reclaim what was taken from her.

Overall Rating

6 / 10
Verdict: Good

User Review

  • ScreenZealots


    6 / 10
    It is downright impossible not to be charmed by the warmth and good-natured humor of writer-director Josh Margolin’s “Thelma,” a cute and delightful film that feels like a buddy action comedy for nonagenarians. This piece of lightweight entertainment is totally average, but that’s okay, because it will prove accessible and enjoyable to just about everyone.

    Thelma (June Squibb) is a 93-year-old with a loving family, including her sweet and kind grandson Danny (Fred Hechinger), daughter Gail (Parker Posey), and son-in-law Alan (Clark Gregg). They worry about her a lot (sometimes too much), but their intentions are always good. When Thelma gets duped by a phone scammer and gives him her life savings, she doesn’t stay at home embarrassed. Instead, she breaks her oldest friend Ben (Richard Roundtree) out of his retirement home and the pair set out on a quest across the city to reclaim her money.

    This film is just as delightful and charming as the premise suggests. Writing a senior citizen as an unlikely action hero is so cute and fun, and even the familiar genre tropes are given an age-appropriate spin. Margolin writes well-developed characters and creates Thelma with wit and a determination that you’ll root for ‘til the end. This is a story about aging, relationships, mortality, and righting the most egregious of wrongs.

    The cast is absolutely terrific, and Margolin showcases Squibb’s charm by making her the star. She and Roundtree have a lovely chemistry (ditto with Hechinger), and the relationship between Thelma and her grandson feels so genuine. These are characters that are an absolute joy to spend time with, and it’s fun to go along on their adventure.

    Unfortunately, the film drags quite a bit in the middle, when the story is stretched too thin, the gags overstay their welcome, and Margolin succumbs to an over reliance on excessive, in your face sentimentality. But there are plenty of laughs and a heartfelt sincerity that keep it afloat.

    “Thelma” isn’t a great movie, but it sure is hard not to like.

    By: Louisa Moore / SCREEN ZEALOTS