Ricki and the Flash is now showing at the Garden City Cinema in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire.
Starring Meryl Streep and Kevin Kline, Ricki and the Flash is a sort of soft rock comedy, written by Diablo Cody.
Streep plays the titular Ricki Rendazzo
AKA Linda, a guitarist and singer who left her husband and children to pursue her dream of being a musician. While she hasn’t achieved stardom, she’s relatively happy, despite filing for bankruptcy and working in a Whole Foods-esque store; so she can live in L.A and play with her band.
That’s rock & roll baby.
Things take a turn when Ricki’s ex husband calls to say her daughter Julie (played by real life daughter Mamie Gummer) is in crisis as her husband has left her. So Ricki must face her past and try to connect with the children she left behind when she moved to California.
Things are uncomfortable for both Ricki and her family, she discovers one of her sons is engaged and she’s not invited to the wedding. Her kids make it quite clear they resent her for leaving them so Ricki has some bridges to build
Streep is great as Ricki, an older woman who knows who she is even though it makes other people uncomfortable. Her character really comes alive when she’s on stage, her band are good, it feels authentic.
I always enjoy seeing Kevin Kline on screen and he has good chemistry with Streep. The casting of Streep’s real life daughter is a great move because while some elements of the film are weak, you can really buy into their relationship and it helps that Mamie looks so much like her mother.
It’s just a shame that the film doesn’t quite hit the right beats in terms of emotion, comedy and storyline.
It’s not often we get stories about women who aren’t conventional mothers. It’s clear Ricki loves her kids but she has a dream and being true to herself, she has to follow that dream even if it is at the expense of leaving her children behind.
I thought the film would dig a little deeper into this subject but it doesn’t, which is a real shame.
The film is ok, not great, not bad. An easy going flick that has masses of potential it just misses the mark.
That said, I was surprised to find myself smiling at the end of the film, no matter how clichéd the ending is. It’s a tame film and one I think should have had a little more bite.
You can book tickets to see Ricki and the Flash at the Garden City Cinema here.